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Mitri: Iran Plays an Important and Positive Role in Lebanon

Information Minister Tareq Mitri stressed on Thursday that Iran wields a great influence in Lebanon, adding that the bilateral ties between the two countries has been bolstered through Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad's visit to Lebanon and Prime Minister Saad Hariri's visit to the Islamic republic.

The minister told IRNA: "Iran is a powerful and influential state that seeks to improve its ties with Arab states."

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Aoun: Solving False Witnesses File Lies in Changing the Government, its Policy and Approach

Free Patriotic Movement leader MP Michel Aoun stated on Wednesday that a state that cannot put false witnesses on trial is a not a real state.

He asked after the movement's weekly meeting: "Should the false witnesses' interests be achieved at the expense of the interests of all citizens?"

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Geagea: Raad's Press Conference Step in Right Direction, We Have Prepared Ourselves for Indictment

Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea stated Wednesday that Loyalty to the Resistance bloc MP Mohammad Raad and Hizbullah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah's recent press conferences "are a step in the right direction."

He said: "We live in a democratic system and every party and every leader has the right to express their opinion, and we should respect their views the same way they respect ours."

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Syria's Ambassador Meets Hariri: Doors to Damascus Open for Hariri

Syria's ambassador to Lebanon Ali Abdel Karim Ali on Wednesday said the doors to Damascus are open for Prime Minister Saad Hariri.

His comments came following a meeting with Hariri at the Grand serial.

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March 14 is Adamant to Give Saudi-Syrian Initiative Chance to Succeed

The March 14 general-secretariat criticized on Wednesday efforts aimed at targeting the Special Tribunal for Lebanon and the indictment that will be issued in ex-Premier Rafik Hariri’s assassination case.

“Some politicians continue to make news conferences that do not bring anything new to (efforts aimed at) targeting the indictment and the international tribunal,” the general-secretariat said following its weekly meeting.

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Qaouq: U.S. Vetoing Syrian-Saudi Effort, False Witnesses File

Hizbullah official Sheikh Nabil Qaouq said Wednesday that the Special Tribunal for Lebanon was being exploited to compensate for the Israeli defeat in the July 2006 war on Lebanon.

Qaouq pointed out that Hizbullah did not need the latest Wikileaks documents to know that the U.S. was controlling all aspects of the STL decisions.

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Suleiman: Lebanese Nationalism-Arab Belonging Important in Nation Building

President Michel Suleiman said Wednesday that the choice of Beirut as host of the Arab Thought Conference is an acknowledgment of Lebanon’s role in the service of Arab culture.

“The Lebanese challenge to allow all sects to participate in decision-making … increases our responsibilities” amid efforts by some people to thwart such attempts, Suleiman said during the opening of the conference at the Phoenicia intercontinental hotel in Beirut.

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Sfeir: Things Will Get Better Thanks to People’s Sacrifices

Maronite Patriarch Nasrallah Sfeir appeased fears about a worsening situation, saying conditions will get better thanks to the people who are making sacrifices to salvage the nation.

“We hope Lebanon would become better than it was,” Sfeir told a student delegation on Wednesday.

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Gemayel: We Reserve Ourselves the Right to Move Away from Isolation

Phalange party leader Amin Gemayel announced on Wednesday that he would accept an invitation to visit Iran following coordination with the Iranian leadership.

While lauding Iranian-Lebanese ties that have witnessed a major leap forward, Gemayel considered Premier Saad Hariri’s visit to Tehran an “important sign.”

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Raad says STL Violation of Constitution, Accuses UN Investigators of Procrastination

Hizbullah MP Mohammed Raad on Wednesday said the Special Tribunal for Lebanon is a violation of the Lebanese Constitution and accused U.N. investigators of procrastination.

He said some the concerns raised by Hizbullah to the U.N. Hariri investigation committee during a March 2010 meeting were not answered.

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