Gemayel Hails Suleiman's Efforts to Resume Dialogue

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Phalange Party leader Amin Gemayel said that President Michel Suleiman fears that the the rival political parties might not resume dialogue, which has spared the country a lot of turbulence.

“The president prioritizes the interests of the country and the Lebanese, he doesn't understand the reasons behind boycotting the all-party talks,” Gemayel told al-Joumhouria newspaper on Monday.

He voiced his support to Suleiman, saying: “I am not convinced that anyone would boycott (the president's) invitation... The contacts we carry out now would be fruitful in the future.”

“I put all my capabilities at the disposal of Suleiman... I have informed him that I will continue efforts to reach common grounds between the Lebanese to resume dialogue,” he said.

Gemayel pointed out that the sharp differences among the rival parties over controversial matters will not be resolved easily, unless the factions communicate.

The Phalange leader said that he had continuously rejected calls to boycott the dialogue sessions as the country “is passing through a delicate phase.”

The March 14 camp announced in October its boycott of government-related activity, including the national dialogue.

It started the boycott in protest against the assassination of Internal Security Forces Intelligence Bureau head Brigadier General Wissam al-Hasan on October 19.

Concerning the mass influx of Syrian and Palestinian refugees into Lebanon from the neighboring country, Gemayel said that it's a “complicated and a dangerous matter.”

However, he said that closing the border with Syria is impossible for humanitarian reasons and attributed it also to the lack of clear demarcated border between the two countries.

“We should organize the issue, locate the residence of these refugees and differentiate between those crossing for humanitarian reasons and others who intend to carry out offenses,” he told the newspaper.

Gemayel urged the international community, U.N. Relief and Works Agency and Arab countries to help Lebanon confront this escalating crisis.

Over 150,000 Syrian refugees have flooded Lebanon since the eruption of anti-regime protests in neighboring Syria in March 2011.

Palestinian refugees seeking refuge in Lebanon have also increased since regime forces shelled the Yarmuk refugee camp in recent weeks.

Some 10,000 Palestinians have sought refuge in Lebanon.

Comments 1
Thumb LebDinosaur 25 December 2012, 06:52

It's ok to come to the table & negotiate. All for it. But when you get to that table, will you look the m8 & Hezb in the eye and tell them exactly what you think, or will you cave in and compromise, compromise, compromise, compromise, etc.