Aoun: Alternative to Orthodox Proposal is Law Based on Single District, Proportional Representation

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Free Patriotic Movement leader MP Michel Aoun on Friday said “the alternative” to the electoral law proposed by the Orthodox Gathering would be an electoral law that turns Lebanon into a single electoral district under a proportional representation system.

“I did not celebrate over the (approval of the) Orthodox Gathering law (by the joint parliamentary committees) and it is not a victory because victory is to be achieved during elections,” Aoun said in an interview on al-Manar television.

“They always jump to conclusions and it was a coincidence that we celebrated my birthday the day the Orthodox law was approved,” he added.

The controversial proposal of the Orthodox Gathering has been slammed as sectarian. According to the draft law, each sect would elect its own lawmakers and Lebanon would be turned into a single electorate under a proportional representation system.

The proposal has already drawn the criticism of President Michel Suleiman and Prime Minister Najib Miqati. It has also been severely criticized by the opposition al-Mustaqbal bloc, the National Struggle Front of MP Walid Jumblat and March 14 opposition's independent Christian Mps.

"Ever since 1989, Christians have been colonized, but today they are demanding their independence," said Aoun, stressing that "the Orthodox Gathering law will take us to a real unity."

"I am secular from head to toe and the demands I want to achieve through the Orthodox law do not reflect sectarian discrimination," he argued.

"I still insist on the statement I said one day, 'Abandon me if I ever become sectarian,' and I'm not discriminating among people, I'm rather defining their rights," he stressed.

"I insist on the 64 (Christian) lawmakers and I will not settle for less," Aoun went on to say.

The FPM leader underlined that the Orthodox Gathering draft law is not a "political maneuver."

"They are taking us lightly and we want a compensation for the past years," he said.

Aoun noted that the controversial law "would not encroach on the rights of any sect."

But "they must not encroach on our rights," he added.

Asked about al-Mustaqbal bloc's remarks that the Orthodox law "serves the Israeli enemy," Aoun described them as "meaningless and absurd."

"No one can blackmail me with their remarks and it is shameful when politicians resort to such a rhetoric," he added.

Asked about Jumblat's stances, Aoun said the Druze leader "is lamenting his defeat and he likes to isolate himself."

He noted that "the most ugly law Lebanon has witnessed is the 2000 law and the 1960 law was only an attempt to refine it."

Aoun stressed that "whoever votes against the Orthodox law is morally corrupt because they would be denying others their rights."

The FPM leader accused President Michel Suleiman of "practicing preemptive pressure on the Constitutional Council" concerning the constitutionality of the Orthodox Gathering draft law.

"I call on President Suleiman not to employ his stance that is not in favor of the Orthodox law to pressure the Constitutional Council," he said.

"The president should have stayed neutral instead of voicing a stance on the Orthodox law to avoid influencing the Constitutional Council's decision," Aoun clarified.

On the possible extension of parliament's mandate, Aoun said: "I'm not with an extension of the current parliament's mandate and should we fail to reach consensus, the parliament's mandate would expire and the government would rule through decrees."

Commenting on his alliance with Hizbullah, Aoun said: "As long as the situation in the South remains the same and Israel is our enemy, we are in an alliance with Hizbullah. Why would I disagree with Hizbullah over domestic issues if we both agree on the principles of reform."

Turning to the issue of his remarks on the Bahraini uprising, the FPM leader said: “The oppression against the revolution that started three years ago must end and it is enough to review Human Rights Watch's reports. Those who criticized me in Lebanon are trying to blackmail me.”

Jumblat on Thursday blasted Aoun over his stances on Bahrain, saying Lebanon must not be “implicated in reckless, hasty and biased political stances.”

Aoun has recently criticized the international community and the Arab League for their lack of support for Bahraini protesters.

The FPM leader's statement to Iran's al-Alam television on Wednesday was considered by Bahrain as an “irresponsible meddling in its internal affairs.”

Aoun hit back on Saturday, saying “we support the Universal Declaration of Human Rights and Bahrain would incur a lot of criticism if it does not advocate it.”

Jumblat lashed out at Aoun without naming him, noting that "reducing the number of ineffectual, 'heroic' political viewpoints, stances and analyses would spare the Lebanese expats in Arab countries threats against their presence.”

Timeline
  • 22 February 2013, 22:02

    Aoun on Bahrain: The oppression against the revolution that started three years ago must end and it is enough to review Human Rights Watch's reports. Those who criticized me in Lebanon are trying to blackmail me.

  • 22 February 2013, 21:47

    Aoun: I'm not with an extension of the current parliament's mandate and should we fail to reach consensus, the parliament's mandate would expire and the government would rule through decrees.

  • 22 February 2013, 21:44

    Aoun: As long as the situation in the South remains the same and Israel is our enemy, we are in an alliance with Hizbullah. Why would I disagree with Hizbullah over domestic issues if we both agree on the principles of reform.

  • 22 February 2013, 21:28

    Aoun: The president should have stayed neutral instead of voicing a stance on the Orthodox law to avoid influencing the Constitutional Council's decision.

  • 22 February 2013, 21:24

    Aoun: I call on President Suleiman not to employ his stance that is not in favor of the Orthodox law to pressure the Constitutional Council.

  • 22 February 2013, 21:22

    Aoun: The president is practicing preemptive pressure on the Constitutional Council.

  • 22 February 2013, 21:20

    Aoun: Whoever votes against the Orthodox law is morally corrupt because they would be denying others their rights.

  • 22 February 2013, 21:05

    Aoun: The most ugly law Lebanon has witnessed is the 2000 law and the 1960 law was only an attempt to refine it.

  • 22 February 2013, 21:01

    Aoun: I was a fighter in the Lebanese army, not a murderer and no one has the right to accuse me of anything.

  • 22 February 2013, 21:00

    Aoun: Jumblat is lamenting his defeat and he likes to isolate himself.

  • 22 February 2013, 20:58

    Aoun on al-Mustaqbal's remarks: No one can blackmail me with their remarks and it is shameful when politicians resort to such a rhetoric.

  • 22 February 2013, 20:56

    Aoun: Al-Mustaqbal's remarks that the Orthodox law serves the enemy are meaningless and absurd.

  • 22 February 2013, 20:55

    Aoun: I'm not encroaching on the rights of any sect and they must not encroach on my rights.

  • 22 February 2013, 20:53

    Aoun: The alternative to the Orthodox Gathering law is a law based on proportional representation and a single electorate district.

  • 22 February 2013, 20:51

    Aoun: They are taking us lightly and we want a compensation for the past years.

  • 22 February 2013, 20:48

    Aoun: The Orthodox Gathering draft law is not a political maneuver.

  • 22 February 2013, 20:47

    Aoun: I insist on the 64 lawmakers and I will not settle for less.

  • 22 February 2013, 20:46

    Aoun: I still insist on the statement I said one day, "Abandon me if I ever become sectarian," and I'm not discriminating among people, I'm rather defining their rights.

  • 22 February 2013, 20:42

    Aoun: I am secular from head to toe and the demands I want to achieve through the Orthodox law do not reflect sectarian discrimination.

  • 22 February 2013, 20:40

    Aoun: The Orthodox Gathering law will take us to a real unity.

  • 22 February 2013, 20:35

    Aoun: Ever since 1989, Christians have been colonized, but today they are demanding their independence.

  • 22 February 2013, 20:34

    Aoun: They always jump to conclusions and it was a coincidence that we celebrated my birthday the day the Orthodox law was approved.

  • 22 February 2013, 20:33

    Free Patriotic Movement leader MP Michel Aoun in an interview on al-Manar: I did not celebrate over the Orthodox Gathering law and it is not a victory because victory is to be achieved during elections.

SourceNaharnet
Comments 22
Thumb zahhet 22 February 2013, 20:36

First & the rest Zahhtooooo taratata

Missing phalangistes 22 February 2013, 20:50

Al Manar is in deep need of Advertisement revenue!!! solution bring up the puppet for an interview!!! wouuuhahahahahahahahaaha

Missing phalangistes 22 February 2013, 20:57

lelelelelellelelelelelellelelllililililililiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii! the muppet show is on manar and they finally get legal $$$$ woulililililililililililiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii

Thumb andre.jabbour 22 February 2013, 20:58

Are you thirsty? I've go something for you....

Default-user-icon Thomas Boulos (Guest) 22 February 2013, 20:57

I love myself
I want you to love me
When I'm feelin' down
I want you above me
I search myself
I want you to find me
I forget myself
I want you to remind me

Chorus:
I don't want anybody else
When I think about you
I touch myself
I don't want anybody else
Oh no, oh no, oh no

You're the one who makes me happy honey
You're the sun who makes me shine
When you're around I'm always laughing
I want to make you mine

I close my eyes
And see you before me
Think I would die
If you were to ignore me
A fool could see
Just how much I adore you
I get down on my knees
I'd do anything for you

queue accordion solo

Thumb andre.jabbour 22 February 2013, 21:23

Font make my family name sound Farsi, the only true Farsi around here is you, Nasrallah and Aoun.

Thumb zalgouta 22 February 2013, 21:26

bruceliiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii

Missing phalangistes 22 February 2013, 21:32

Hey youuuu!!! the puppet is going to pass out before election! trust me!! he is getting more and more tired day after day! which make him unconstitutional!!! wouhahhahahah woulililililililililiiiiiiiiiiii

Missing allouchi 22 February 2013, 21:37

Aoun is a cancer for Lebanon and the worst thing that ever happened to the Christians of the Middle East...

Thumb The-Patriot 22 February 2013, 21:42

Lol this dude is a joke .. Who is he to judge what the president should say or not .

Thumb barbar 22 February 2013, 22:39

Looking at his past as objectively, it seems that Aoun prefers to ally himself with whoever he feels has the most power. However, the fact that many politicians got angry over his remarks on Bahrain is a travesty, especially since this is a country that prides itself on freedom of speech and press. Bahrain is deserving of a revolution, however, shame on the General for not supporting the Syrian Revolution when it was just a peaceful uprising. There is no doubt now that Lebanon needs to disassociate itself with the Baath and sever ties, as Sami Gemayel was saying after the Michel Samaha case. I fail to see how the Orthodox Gathering Law promotes unity, it does the opposite. I am neither 14th nor 8th, and I come from a partial Christian background, and I don't believe that it is the right thing for the country. We need secularism, especially now.

Thumb primesuspect 22 February 2013, 23:43

May God have mercy on Lebanon, because the Lebanese aren't taking the right path. May God inspire our long lost politicians... such as this ill one.

Missing samiam 23 February 2013, 00:43

so he's a racist who somehow preaches against confessionalism--call him a a liar or someone who will say anything to rise to power.

Default-user-icon suckers (Guest) 23 February 2013, 02:02

Aoun: Alternative to Orthodox Proposal is Law Based on Single District, Proportional Representation, obviously this is what it was always about exactly what hassan wanted. Aoun played his role magnificently and Gemayel then Geagea took the bait, hook line and sinker.

Missing billabash 23 February 2013, 11:45

I guess this clown was sleeping during math class. This clown says that the only alternative is one district, propotional representation. If we have 128 MPs, and let's assume this rough confession distribution of lebanon 40% Christians, 28% Shia and 28% Sunnis, then the christians are directly voting for 51 MPs. The other alternatives bring a total number between 56 to 58 MPs directly voted by christians.

Missing greatpierro 23 February 2013, 18:14

Dear Karim, keeping away from empty slogans, where do you see wahabism in the sunni community in lebanon. We have a sunni community in lebanon that is moderate and that is agreeing with the christians on a Lebanon first vision (in the past they were after panarabism and the like). Are we just rejecting the whole sunni community just because the christians cannot live "en bonne intelligence" with their sunni partners.
Aoun is diabolizing the sunnis in the same manner that Pierre Gemayel, Camille Chamoun and Raymond Eddy who rejected sharing the political power in Lebanon with the Sunnis. This led to the Sunnis to follow first Nasser than to seek the help of the OLP which led to the civil war. Now what?
The sunnis are saying we want only Lebanon, sovereign with a strong government, pwoer sharing with all the community on the basis of 1/2 for christians and 1/2 for muslims.

Missing gcb1 23 February 2013, 18:35

He is trying to convince us all that he is secular, but I am not convinced.

Yes, I agree that Lebanon needs a PR system with a single district, but if he was secular at heart, he would not jump so far to the most sectarian proposal, which is the Orthodox Law. So no, you are not secular from head to toe Mr. Aoun, because if you were you would not support such a sectarian and divisive law.

Missing bigjohn 23 February 2013, 18:45

M14 are as guilty for their support of the Bahraini dictator. Why don't you say the same of Bahrain?

Missing peace 23 February 2013, 18:46

i already did big head several times unlike you only supporting bahrein but not syria....

Missing bigjohn 23 February 2013, 18:49

Proportional representation is the most democratic out of the lousy alternative electoral systems...in the lousy Lebanese Sectarian System.

Missing bigjohn 23 February 2013, 18:49

Proportional representation is the most democratic out of the lousy alternative electoral systems...in the lousy Lebanese Sectarian System.

Missing peace 23 February 2013, 18:54

but you fail to mention that it is also a system that does not give the elected government a decisive majority and that it has to compromise making the country difficult to govern...