Aoun: There are No Bilateral Agreements and No One Will be Excludedإقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
Free Patriotic Movement founder MP Michel Aoun reassured Thursday that there will be no “bilateral, tripartite or four-party agreements” and that “no one will be excluded” should he be elected president, shortly after his nomination was formally endorsed by ex-PM Saad Hariri.
“We are visiting ex-PM Hariri today to thank him for endorsing our presidential nomination. We have made pledges to each other to secure the success of the mission and help Lebanon resolve its crisis and we hope to restore Lebanon's security and stability and revive it economically,” said Aoun after meeting Hariri at the Center House.
“The National Pact was a pact between Muslims – both Sunnis and Shiites – and all Christians to live together with equal rights. The National Pact does not contain a bilateral agreement (between Sunnis and Christians),” Aoun noted.
“There will not be bilateral, tripartite or four-party agreements but rather a single agreement on running the country's affairs... and whoever tries to eliminate a certain sect would be trying to eliminate Lebanon,” the FPM founder added.
Speaker Nabih Berri's AMAL Movement had recently accused Aoun and Hariri of seeking a bilateral power-sharing agreement aimed at marginalizing “political Shiism.”
“No one loses through dialogue. Everyone would win and Lebanon would win,” Aoun reassured.
“We are confident that those who are opposing now are basing their opposition on prior misconceptions. No one will be excluded and we will not deal with anyone maliciously,” the FPM founder emphasized.
“We call on everyone to cooperate with us and to await our performance which will show our true intentions,” Aoun added, stressing that “rumors cannot build a country.”
Lebanon has been without a president since the term of Michel Suleiman ended in May 2014 and Hizbullah, Aoun's Change and Reform bloc and some of their allies have been boycotting the parliament's electoral sessions, stripping them of the needed quorum.
Hariri had launched an initiative in late 2015 to nominate Hizbullah's ally MP Suleiman Franjieh for the presidency but his proposal was met with reservations from the country's main Christian parties as well as Hizbullah.
The supporters of Aoun's presidential bid have argued that he is more eligible than Franjieh to become president due to the size of his parliamentary bloc and his bigger influence in the Christian community.