Arslan Says No Political Party Can Twist Arms of Its Rivals in Lebanon

Lebanese Democratic Party leader MP Talal Arslan on Wednesday noted that political consensus is inevitable in Lebanon, stressing that no political party can twist the arms of its rivals in Lebanese politics.

"The electoral law has nothing to do with the shape and mission of the (new) cabinet. We have said that they are two separate things, but the electoral law requires consensus among the Lebanese and so does the cabinet," Arslan said after meeting with Speaker Nabih Berri in Ain al-Tineh.

"To say things frankly: if any party in the country believes it can twist the arms of other parties politically, then they are mistaken in their political comprehension of Lebanon's situation," Arslan added.

He warned that anyone who steers away from consensus would be “subjecting the country to strife and divisions and exposing it to the conspiracies taking place abroad and having a direct impact on the Lebanese arena.”

Commenting on the cabinet formation process, Arslan said “conditions and counter-conditions voiced through the media are not useful and will not benefit anyone.”

Asked whether he is still dismayed by the move of his allies in the March 8 camp, who excluded him from their meeting with Prime Minister-designate Tammam Salam, Arslan said: “These are internal issues and I would have preferred that they were not highlighted in this manner. A mistake happened in this issue and we voiced our opinion and God willing, things are going in the right direction.”

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