Thursday, 21 Nov 2019

Hariri: All parties should make sacrifices

Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri said that the situation of the country is the most important today, and all parties should be humble and make some sacrifices for the benefit of the country and the Lebanese people.

In a chat with reporters before chairing the meeting of the Future parliamentary bloc, Prime Minister Hariri said he was surprised to be held responsible of the delay in the formation of the government and stressed that he was in contact with all parties even if he did not meet with all of them.

In response to a question about him not meeting with Minister Gebran Bassil, he said: "I may call him and invite him to visit me but I have not sensed anything new so far. I know the stance of the President and the Free Patriotic Movement, and I consider that everyone should care about the economic situation. If the prime minister is expected to make all the compromises, then we already sacrificed a lot. I want to make progress in this area, and I think that even Minister Gebran Bassil advanced in his stance and there still are some required improvements. But the basic problem, which I have repeatedly warned of, is to announce stances in the media. If no party had announced its stance, it would have been easy to modify it. Now we will see how to solve things in the right way."

He denied that the resolutions of the CEDRE conference were in danger and said: "But the countries will not wait for us forever."

Asked if the problem was that President Aoun referred him to Minister Bassil to agree on shares, Prime Minister Hariri said: "No one refers me to anyone. I am the prime minister, I form the government and talk to all parties. Each party has demands and I am working on forming a national entente government."

Asked if the actual crisis comes from the fact that Minister Bassil is in the race for the presidency, Prime Minister Hariri said: "For me there is a President of the Republic, General Michel Aoun, and let no one anticipate things."

As for the new sanctions on Iran and their impact on the formation of the government, Hariri said: "We are in contact with Hezbollah, they want to form a government, and everyone wants a government."

He denied any external interference to prevent the formation of the government: "On the contrary, there is a push from abroad to stabilize Lebanon. We noticed how many foreign officials have visited Lebanon and contacted president Aoun and me urging us to form the government. The international community is keen on the formation of the government and the implementation of the decisions of the CEDRE Conference. The Arab countries as well as the Western ones are keen on stability in Lebanon because the challenges we face, both economically and regionally, are serious."

Asked about his stance from the diplomatic row between Saudi Arabia and Canada, Hariri said: "In principle, we adhere to the non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries. We respect the full sovereignty of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and its laws. We express our solidarity with the Kingdom in its stance, as did the League of Arab States and the Organization of Islamic Cooperation to which we belong. We hope that the Canadian government will reconsider its position in the interest of pursuing the friendly relations it always had with the Kingdom".

Source: National News Agency

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