Jumblat Reportedly Admitted to Conspiring with Syria, Iran Against Haririإقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
Progressive Socialist Party leader Walid Jumblat has admitted that he conspired with Syria and Iran against a Qatari-Turkish initiative, forcing the collapse of ex-Premier Saad Hariri’s government in early 2011, media reports said Tuesday.
“I carried out the coup along with Premier (Najib) Miqati,” Jumblat told 16 leaders meeting at Baabda palace under President Michel Suleiman at the national dialogue session. “We conspired with Syria and Iran against the Qatari-Turkish initiative.”
“I don’t regret the coup because it was aimed at averting strife,” newspapers that hit the newsstands on Tuesday quoted him as saying.
The PSP chief reiterated that he is a centrist and advised both the opposition and the majority to end their support for two rival neighborhoods in the northern city of Tripoli.
“I am neither with March 14 nor with March 8 and both teams should stop funding and arming Bab al-Tabbaneh and Jabal Mohsen to avert sedition,” Jumblat said.
Majority Sunni Bab al-Tabbaneh residents and mostly Alawite Jabal Mohsen have engaged in gunfights that left several people dead. The clashes were seen as a spillover of the Syrian crisis to Lebanon.
On Hizbullah’s weapons, Jumblat rejected linking them to the Arab-Israeli conflict and putting them in defense of Iran.
“We have previously agreed during the dialogue that was led by Speaker Nabih Berri in 2006 to put the arms in defense of Lebanon,” he stressed.
In remarks to An Nahar daily published Tuesday, Jumblat said the national dialogue session was “very good.”
He hailed Suleiman on his suggestions but lamented that some officials continue to hold onto the past.
“We should find solutions to several problems that force us to adopt a policy of keeping Lebanon at a distance” from the Syrian crisis, he said, adding “what’s happening in Tripoli and the North is a very dangerous alarm bell.”
Northern Lebanon has also been shaken by tit-for-tat sectarian abductions raising more fears that the unrest in Syria would expand Tripoli’s instability to other areas.