Dialogue Postponed to Dec. 14 as Franjieh Says Willing to Consider March 14 Proposal on Presidency

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A national dialogue session was held at Speaker Nabih Berri's Ain el-Tineh residence on Wednesday as officials addressed the ongoing presidential vacuum and Marada Movement leader MP Suleiman Franjieh urged the media against exaggerating claims on ending the deadlock.

He said after the brief talks: “Change and Reform bloc MP Michel Aoun is the March 8 camp's presidential candidate, but if the March 14 camp makes a proposal, then we are willing to consider it.”

“We respect the opinion of the other side and take it into consideration,” he told reporters.

“You would be wrong to believe that our positions are being made without consulting Aoun,” he stressed.

Media speculation has been rife in recent days that Franjieh would be a new presidential candidate in the wake of claims that he had held talks last week with Mustaqbal Movement head MP Saad Hariri.

Franjieh refused to confirm or deny the claims, saying: “Whether I met with Hariri or not is not important..”

“We all have our convictions and are united by Lebanon. We should set aside our interests and place Lebanon's interests as a priority,” he stated.

Moreover, he urged the media to derive positives from recent developments, saying that efforts are ongoing to reach a settlement to end the presidential deadlock.

“We trust the other side and the proposal made by the March 14 camp is serious, but nothing official has been reached,” he remarked.

Lebanon has been without a president since May 2014 when the term of Michel Suleiman ended without the election of a successor.

Ongoing disputes between the rival March 8 and 14 alliances over a consensual candidate have thwarted the polls.

M.T.

D.A.

Comments 5
Thumb beiruti 25 November 2015, 15:38

Its a hellova move if it works. Frangieh is at the crossroads of several internal Lebanese divides such as. His position in Zghorta vs. the Sunni of Tripoli and his position vis a vis Geagea and the LF.

If this works, then it closes or at least narrows the divides between the Sunni and the Maronites at least those from Zghorta and his making peace with Geagea will bring that whole bloody episode to a close as well.

Frangieh may not be the sharpest tool in the tool box, but given the alternatives, he is certainly the brightest.

Missing incorruptible 25 November 2015, 16:13

Nice choice March 14...

Missing bigjohn 25 November 2015, 19:02

I have been saying for the last few years that M14 has been on the decline in Lebanon, and always represented a minority of Lebanese. But, Frangieh? If this is true, I guess I kind of understated that statement.

Thumb liberty 26 November 2015, 04:49

you've said so many stupid things over the last few years

Missing bigjohn 25 November 2015, 19:09

The Shiites are as law abiding as anyone else. Your bigoted comments by calling them "mitwalis" are one of the reasons the Lebanese Shiites have been voting overwhelming for M8. You are ONLY helping M8. Ignorant bigoted comments ONLY hurts M14.