Free Patriotic Movement leader and Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil slammed on Thursday the army chief Jean Kahwaji and Defense Minister Samir Moqbel over military and security appointments and announced that the FPM wants the appointments to take place “under the law.”
“The FPM has never accepted any illegal measure … We want the appointments to occur under the law,” said Bassil during an interview on LBCI television.
“The current Army Command has taken unjust decisions against some army brigadier generals,” Bassil charged.
“There is a problem that needs to be solved and solutions must occur in the cabinet and with the participation of the FPM,” Bassil added, noting that “the dialogue table cannot produce solutions as long as some parties are linking their decisions to foreign forces.”
As for the FPM’s Sunday rally outside the presidential palace in Baabda, Bassil noted that it is aimed at “reviving the scene of the struggle movement that we were raised on.”
“My resentment over the electricity file is bigger than that of the civil society protest movement and the electricity projects were obstructed,” Bassil added.
Earlier in the day, Colonel Maroun al-Qobayati was appointed as commander of the army’s Commando Regiment to replace Brig. Gen. Chamel Roukoz, media reports said.
Hopes have dimmed on the possibility of the rival political parties reaching a settlement on the promotion of several officers ahead of Roukoz’s retirement on October 15.
Change and Reform bloc chief MP Michel Aoun had been hoping that the promotion of Roukoz, his son-in-law, would keep him in the military and make him eligible to lead the institution.