Lebanon’s top Christian leader slams the ruling class

File photo of Patriarch Bechara Boutros Rai in a Sunday sermon.
File photo of Cardinal Maronite Patriarch, Mar Bishara Boutros Al-Rai

Maronite Patriarch, Mar Bishara Boutros Al-Rai, blasted the ruling elite of Lebanon in his Easter message, over tampering with people’s lives and the fate of the nation

“How painful it is for us to see the ruling group among us and those around it tampering with the fate of the nation as an entity, a people, a land and dignity.”

He added, “How far away is the political group, especially the ruling group in our country, from the culture of mercy.”

“We are facing a plan that aims to change Lebanon in its entity, its system, its formula and traditions”

He accused some parties of trying to demolish the Lebanese constitution and institutions:

” Some parties are trying to demolish the constitution , the, financial, banking, military and judicial institutions”

He also accused some parties of fabricating problems to prevent solutions and settlements.”

Al-Rai called for the formation of “a government of non-partisan specialists in which no party has a blocking third that meets the aspirations of the Lebanese, that will revive the institutions and implement the reforms needed the get the required assistance for ending the financial crisis .

File photo: A huge rally in Bkirki in support of Patriarch Rai’s neutrality calls. “No right shall be wasted. I understand your pain and anger well. I understand your revolt. Do not stay silent about politicizing the judiciary. Do not stay silent about illegal arms. Do not stay silent about innocents kept in prisons, or the naturalization of Palestinians. Do not stay silent about the coup against the state and system. Do not stay silent about the delayed government formation, or about reforms or our martyrs. .” Rai told the people at the rally

Al Rai has been campaigning for months for neutralizing Lebanon

His Easter message comes a day after a video was leaked in which he blasted Hezbollah. 

“I want to tell them…You want us to stay in a state of war that you decide? Are you asking us before you go to war?” The top Christian spiritual leader said in a leaked video circulated by local media on Thursday, in which he mentioned the conflicts in Syria, Iraq and Yemen.

“We get people from Hezbollah. They come to us to tell us: ‘this arsenal is against us, we can no longer endure’. Because they are also hungry like us,” he said, in reference to Hezbollah’s illegal arms.

It also comes 2 days after former Justice minister Ashraf Rifi described Hezbollah as a terrorist organization and declared it as the enemy of Lebanon

“Hezbollah is a murderer a dangerous , criminal and terrorist , organization and the enemy of Lebanon,” stressing that “neutrality is the only demand in Lebanon away from the Iranian agenda of Hezbollah.”

Al Rai did not mention Hezbollah by name in his easter message but according to analysts the word ” the parties ” is a meant to be a reference to Hezbollah and its allies

Many Lebanese consider Lebanon as a colony of Iran, but are afraid of openly saying so because of Hezbollah’s arms . All the 3 main branches of government are controlled by Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah who is acting as the Supreme leader of Lebanon.

In Sept 2019 Nasrallah openly declared his allegiance to Iran its Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei