Mashnouq Tackles Appointments Dilemma in Rabieh Talksإقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
Interior Minister Nouhad al-Mashnouq discussed Thursday with Free Patriotic Movement leader MP Michel Aoun the controversial appointment of high-ranking security officials at state posts.
The Mustaqbal Movement minister told reporters from Aoun's residence in Rabieh that the matter was thoroughly tackled, refusing to disclose more details.
“The national responsibility compels us to maintain the cabinet's stability and dialogue will continue,” Mashnouq noted.
He pointed out that the two parties are “dealing with the delicate stage (the country is passing through) with a great amount of concern and seriousness.”
“I am betting on Aoun's seriousness and his responsibility towards the nation,” Mashnouq said when asked about the FPM ministers' threats to boycott cabinet.
Aoun has repeatedly threatened to withdraw his ministers from the cabinet over the controversial extension of top security officers' terms.
The military posts in Lebanon are suffering as the result of the months-long presidential vacuum in light of the parliament's failure to elect a successor for Michel Suleiman whose tenure ended in May last year.
The FPM chief has previously rejected any attempts to extend the terms of high-ranking security officials.
Media reports had said that Aoun's main objective is to receive political consensus on the appointment of Commando Regiment chief Brig. Gen. Chamel Roukoz, who is Aoun's son-in-law, as army chief as part of a package for the appointment of other top security officers.
Roukoz's tenure ends in October while the term of Army Commander General Jean Qahwaji expires at the end of September.
Despite the reports about his insistence to have his son-in-law as army chief, Aoun denied that he had made such a proposal.
Internal Security Forces chief Ibrahim Basbous is also set to retire in June.