Lebanese Leaders Mourn Death of ex-Patriarch Sfeirإقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
Lebanon's leaders and politicians on Sunday mourned the death of former Maronite patriarch Nasrallah Sfeir, an influential figure in Lebanon's modern history.
"The national arena will miss a man who was firm in his defense of Lebanon's sovereignty and independence and its people's dignity," President Michel Aoun said.
Prime Minister Saad Hariri meawhile remembered how Sfeir cooperated with his slain father, ex-PM Rafik Hariri, over "the same national cause," adding that they defended "independence, full sovereignty and the freedom of decision."
Hariri also hoped "patriarch Sfeir's image will remain an icon for those working loyally for their country."
Free Patriotic Movement chief and Foreign Minister Jebran Bassil described Sfeir as one of the Maronite church's most prominent patriarchs.
"We are very saddened and we are deeply determined to continue with (Maronite) Patriarch (Beshara) al-Rahi the path of preserving freely diverse existence and the final entity with its humanitarian message," Bassil tweeted.
Progressive Socialist Party leader ex-MP Walid Jumblat meanwhile said: "Farewell to the patriarch of independence, reconciliation, love and peace."
Jumblat was referring to the historic reconciliation between Druze and Christians in Mount Lebanon which was sponsored by Sfeir.
Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdul Latif Daryan meanwhile described Sfeir as "a role model for moderation, openness, wisdom, dialogue, love and coexistence between Muslims and Christians."
Kataeb Party chief MP Sami Gemayel said Sfeir's "smile, wisdom and firmness will remain carved in our heart and mind."
Higher Islamic Shiite Council chief Sheikh Abdul Amir Qabalan meawhile lauded Sfeir's "patriotic stances" and said he was "a partner in immunizing national unity, deepening coexistence and preserving Lebanon."