Saniora Says March 8 Rejects Consensual Law, Harb Stresses: No to Proposals that 'Partition Lebanon'

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Former Prime Minister Fouad Saniora stressed on Friday the importance of holding elections on time, accusing the March 8 coalition of being “intransigent and unwilling to reach an electoral law that enjoys consensus”.

“Several efforts have been exerted to reconcile viewpoints in a bid to reach a proposal that enjoys consensus among the Lebanese,” Saniora said after meeting with independent March 14 figures at MP Butros Harb's office.

He elaborated: “We submitted several proposals with the aim of holding elections on time, but the other camp is unwilling to agree on a consensual electoral law”.

The al-Mustaqbal parliamentary bloc head assured that “efforts will continue to be exerted to reach a just and feasible electoral law that can enable the Lebanese to express their opinions freely and without pressures and that can preserve coexistence”.

“Such a formula would protect Lebanon in the face of all the circumstances we're going through”.

MP Harb stated after the meeting that the March 14 coalition is against anything that leads to sectarian polarization in Lebanon.

“We support anything that consolidates coexistence,” he noted.

Harb revealed that the Lebanese Forces, the Phalange Party, March 14's independents, al-Mustaqbal and the Progressive Socialist Party have revised their stances and agreed on proportional representation.

“The other camp, however, wants to stay in power,” he expressed.

The independent March 14 MP urged the March 8 coalition to show flexibility “like the opposition did if they are keen on democracy and Lebanon”.

"They insist, however, on the Orthodox law or the single district with proportional representation law and we reject both proposals”.

President Michel Suleiman and Premier Najib Miqati have signed a decree that sets the elections on June 9 based on the 1960 law that was used in the 2009 polls over the lack of agreement between the bickering parliamentary blocs.

A consensus over an electoral law has yet to be reached after the Orthodox Gathering's draft electoral law that considers Lebanon a single district, and allows each sect to vote for its own MPs under a proportional representation system was opposed by Suleiman, Miqati, al-Mustaqbal bloc, the PSP, and the independent Christian MPs of the March 14 opposition, saying it harms the social fabric and increases sectarian tension.

Comments 1
Missing greatpierro 17 March 2013, 06:21

Ft orthodox law is rejected by Sleiman and miquati who are not in m14. Moreover orthodox law is not consensual by definition.