Geagea: Hizbullah Presence in Syria, Samaha Verdict Encourage IS Presence in Lebanon

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Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea warned Thursday that Hizbullah's fighting alongside the regime in Syria and a judicial verdict such as the one issued against ex-minister Michel Samaha are factors that encourage the proliferation of extremist groups similar to the Islamic State in Lebanon.

“Hizbullah's presence in Syria and a verdict such as Michel Samaha's verdict are factors that pave the ground for the presence of groups similar to the IS in Lebanon,” said Geagea in an interview on LBCI television.

“If we want to fight terrorism, we must protect and help moderate Sunnis in Lebanon. This cannot happen through fighting in Syria or Yemen or through issuing a verdict similar to Samaha's verdict,” he added.

Geagea was responding to remarks voiced Sunday by Hizbullah chief Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah, who warned that al-Mustaqbal movement and its leaders and the March 14 forces would be “the first victims” if the Islamic State and al-Nusra Front take a foothold in Lebanon.

Addressing Lebanon's Christians, Nasrallah asked: “Who will protect your women from enslavement and your churches from destruction?”

Geagea snapped back on Thursday. “We don't want anyone to protect the churches of Christians in Lebanon. Has Nasrallah defended Syria's Christians and or prevented the enslavement of women in Iraq? We have men who know how to defend,” he said.

In response to a question, Geagea said he has concerns over possible “assassinations against al-Mustaqbal movement leaders to scare people and tell them 'it is the IS.'”

As for the situation in the northeastern border town of Arsal, Geagea stressed that the Lebanese army “has the ability to control the situation” and that “there are no indications that the IS will enter Lebanon.”

“The army is deployed in all the corners of Arsal,” he noted.

On Sunday, Nasrallah hinted that his group would intervene militarily in Arsal's outskirts to oust the militants of the IS and al-Nusra if the Lebanese state failed to do so.

“Does Sayyed Hassan know about Arsal more than its residents? Who represents Arsal, al-Mustaqbal movement or Hizbullah?” Geagea asked on Thursday.

“If there are terrorists in Arsal, let Sayyed Hassan give their names to the army so that it performs its duty,” he said.

“Hizbullah is sitting and talking with (Interior Minister) Nouhad al-Mashnouq, so why don't they talk with him about the issue of Arsal instead of launching this media campaign?” wondered Geagea.

As for the presidential crisis, Geagea noted that he is “still a presidential candidate.”

“My chances are low but not nonexistent and from the very first moment I did not insist on my nomination. I said if there is a presidential race, I'm willing to nominate myself, but noted that I would congratulate the winner,” he added.

“My nomination was not at any moment aimed at blocking (Free Patriotic Movement chief MP Michel) Aoun's candidacy and it was a normal thing for me to run for the presidency,” Geagea noted.

Asked about the characteristics of a good president, Geagea said “a real president is one who respects the Constitution and the laws, who has courage and who has a vision to overcome the current crisis.”

“I agreed with Aoun on coordinating our stances regarding the characteristics that the next president must enjoy and we didn't agree on the principle of picking a third candidate,” he revealed.

Geagea also insisted that “the (parliamentary) quorum for the election of a president during the first (voting) session is 64+1,” noting that “this debate has been running for 50 years in Lebanon.”

“Boycotting sessions is not the right approach and any constitutional article not confined to a certain quorum should follow the half+1 rule,” said Geagea.

He also lamented that “Hizbullah will not endorse any president that it does not want.”

“But we will maintain our stance that calls for a strong republic,” Geagea pledged.

Y.R.

Timeline
  • 28 May 2015, 22:37

    Geagea: I have concerns over possible assassinations against al-Mustaqbal movement leaders to scare people and tell them "it is the IS."

  • 28 May 2015, 22:27

    Geagea: If we want to fight terrorism, we must protect and help moderate Sunnis in Lebanon. This cannot happen through fighting in Syria or Yemen or through issuing a verdict similar to Samaha's verdict.

  • 28 May 2015, 22:25

    Geagea: Hizbullah's presence in Syria and a verdict such as Michel Samaha's verdict are factors that pave the ground for the presence of groups similar to the IS in Lebanon.

  • 28 May 2015, 22:23

    Geagea: We don't want anyone to protect the churches of Christians in Lebanon. Has Nasrallah defended Syria's Christians and or prevented the enslavement of women in Iraq? We have men who know how to defend.

  • 28 May 2015, 22:21

    Geagea: Who devises the defense strategies in Lebanon?

  • 28 May 2015, 22:20

    Geagea: Hizbullah is sitting and talking with Nouhad al-Mashnouq, so why don't they talk with him about the issue of Arsal instead of launching this media campaign?

  • 28 May 2015, 22:18

    Geagea: If there are terrorists in Arsal, let Sayyed Hassan give their names to the army so that it performs its duty.

  • 28 May 2015, 22:18

    Geagea: Does Sayyed Hassan know about Arsal more than its residents? Who represents Arsal, al-Mustaqbal movement or Hizbullah?

  • 28 May 2015, 22:17

    Geagea: The army is deployed in all the corners of Arsal.

  • 28 May 2015, 22:16

    Geagea on Arsal: The Lebanese army has the ability to control the situation and there are no indications that the IS will enter Lebanon.

  • 28 May 2015, 21:59

    Geagea: Hizbullah will not endorse any president that it does not want but we will maintain our stance that calls for a strong republic.

  • 28 May 2015, 21:57

    Geagea: When we finish the presidential elections, we will propose a constitutional amendment to prevent the obstruction of the elections in the future.

  • 28 May 2015, 21:54

    Geagea: The quorum for the election of a president during the first session is half+1 and this debate has been running for 50 years in Lebanon. Boycotting sessions is not the right approach and any constitutional article not confined to a certain quorum should follow the half+1 rule.

  • 28 May 2015, 21:53

    Geagea: All parties are not ready for parliamentary elections but I would be the first to participate in legislative polls if it was scheduled.

  • 28 May 2015, 21:51

    Geagea: We agreed with our allies over the issues that require urgent legislation, such as the electoral law, the state budget and the law of renaturalization.

  • 28 May 2015, 21:48

    Geagea on Aoun's latest initiative: We did not discuss Aoun's initiative prior to its launch and when I met the Change and Reform delegation we agreed that a referendum would require a constitutional amendment. The issue would rather be a poll but everyone already knows that Aoun and Geagea are the strongest candidates.

  • 28 May 2015, 21:45

    Geagea: I agreed with Aoun on coordinating our stances regarding the characteristics that the next president must enjoy and we didn't agree on the principle of picking a third candidate.

  • 28 May 2015, 21:42

    Geagea: Aoun respects the Constitution, but according to his own interpretation.

  • 28 May 2015, 21:41

    Geagea: Aoun's characteristic is his representation of popular bases.

  • 28 May 2015, 21:41

    Geagea: A real president is one who respects the Constitution and the laws, who has courage and who has a vision to overcome the current crisis.

  • 28 May 2015, 21:40

    Geagea: My nomination was not at any moment aimed at blocking Aoun's candidacy and it was a normal thing for me to run for the presidency.

  • 28 May 2015, 21:38

    Geagea: I'm still a presidential candidate. My chances are low but not nonexistent and from the very first moment I did not insist on my nomination. I said if there is a presidential race, I'm willing to nominate myself, but noted that I would congratulate the winner.

  • 28 May 2015, 21:36

    Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea in an interview on LBCI: If we are real Lebanese, we must not surrender to the ongoing events and we must activate the culture of life.

Comments 12
Thumb Mystic 28 May 2015, 22:30

Geagea: "I'm still a presidential candidate. My chances are low"
Because your Saudi masters ditched you Geagea, they want Qahwaji instead.

Thumb -phoenix1 29 May 2015, 12:28

And I bet you ya Mystic, if and when General Qahwaji declares his candidacy, you and your people at HA and the FPM will declare him your enemy. The only good president in your eyes will be a true exponential lackey like Emile Lahoud, and here you've already got yourselves an even better candidate in Aoun. But as you rightly stated of Geagea, Aoun stands even less chance, so Qahwaji will be just great, as he will work and walk in the footsteps of his predecessor Sleyman.

Thumb Machia 28 May 2015, 22:43

Geagea, whether you like him or not, is speaking a lot of sense, putting things into perspective away from the Hezbollah propaganda aimed at justifying their intervention and the deaths of hundred of Lebanese young men in defence of the Assad regime.

Thumb Mystic 28 May 2015, 23:27

In defence of their country and families aswell. If Assad fell, we would all be next. So yes, we defend him as he is part of the Resistance aswell.

Missing mohammad_ca 28 May 2015, 23:49

When ASSad falls hizbollat will be next for helping ASDad.

Thumb Mystic 29 May 2015, 00:37

Careful mohamed, first you need to win.

Thumb blablablablabla 29 May 2015, 09:24

Geagea: grosso modo fan de la série des barbapapa et des bisounours de Daech.

Thumb -phoenix1 29 May 2015, 12:29

Blabla, if such is Geagea, then surely Aoun the claoun is a lot worse, on es d'accord sur ce point?

Thumb blablablablabla 29 May 2015, 13:22

I am wondering if you know how Geagea threatened to kill Bachir at Barbara checkpoint during the civil war ...
entre les 2, je choisi le moins pire et Geagea pourrait vendre sa propre mère.

Missing bigjohn 29 May 2015, 15:52

"Geagea: Hizbullah Presence in Syria, Samaha Verdict Encourage IS Presence in Lebanon"...Look at this logic? How about the KSA and France who are killing IS members in Syria, AND Iraq AND who France gave weapons to the LAF and KSA paid for them to kill IS members in Lebanon...Do they "encourage IS presence in Lebanon"???

Missing bigjohn 29 May 2015, 16:01

“If we want to fight terrorism, we must protect and help moderate Sunnis in Lebanon. This cannot happen through fighting in Syria or Yemen or through issuing a verdict similar to Samaha's verdict,” he added."???........So Geaga considers the Takfiri Monarchist KSA who are arming and paying Takfiri Extremists "terrorists" in Syria "moderate"???. Wow!..Geaga who was an expert in killing all kind of Lebanese Sunni civilians is now an expert on who is a "Sunni moderate".

Thumb megahabib 29 May 2015, 22:53

Your regular Salafi grunt doesn't even know who Samaha is, but nice try!