Mikati receives a delegation of opposition deputies
Sunday, Nov 12, 2023

NNA - Prime Minister Najib Mikati received at his residence this evening a delegation of opposition members of parliament, including MPs Sami Gemayel, Ghassan Hasbani, Bilal Hosheimi, Ashraf Rifi, Mark Daou, Wadah Sadiq and Michel Moawad.

Following the meeting, MP Gemayel said: “We came as opposition deputies in the parliament to deliver a clear message to PM Mikati regarding the imminent danger to the army institution. We are keen on this institution and its members and officers, and we see that there is great confusion and danger to it. We are keen for this matter to end as quickly as possible, and that is why we came here to suggest to the Prime Minister that a quick decision be taken in the government to postpone the step down of the Army Commander for a year, in order to preserve the status of the army and its leadership, this institution that has the consensus of the Lebanese...”

He added: “Today, all Lebanese, of all sects and affiliations, believe in this institution, and it is the duty of all of us to preserve it. Any option outside of this is unconstitutional and illegal.”

Gemayel continued, “We consider that the greatest responsibility in this matter falls on the government, and the Minister of Defense must play this role and issue a decision to postpone the dismissal of the Army Commander, because in the absence of a President of the Republic there is no ability to appoint...But if the Defense Minister is not ready to carry out this duty, then the government and the Prime Minister must assume their responsibility...”

He considered that even in normal times, vacuum cannot be allowed in the army, so how about such a critical situation in which we are living, where Lebanon is in a state of war?

“We are in dire need of a strong, cohesive army capable of fulfilling its role and assuming its responsibilities towards all the Lebanese,” Gemayel underlined, stressing that the army ought to be the subject of consensus and away from political quarrels and disagreements.

“It is our duty to protect the army and preserve this institution, which remains the guarantor and unifying institution and the symbol of this country, its unity, survival and continuity,” he affirmed.

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