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Miqati’s Circles: Hariri’s Attack on Hizbullah’s Arms Aimed at Torpedoing National Dialogue

Premier-designate Najib Miqati’s circles accused Caretaker Prime Minister Saad Hariri of holding Miqati responsible for his alliance’s boycott of the new cabinet at a time when Hariri had already made up his mind not to participate in the government.

The circles drew question marks over Hariri’s speech on Monday in which he said March 14 waited for answers from Miqati for a month over its demands on the international tribunal and arms.

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Ban Urges Lebanese Officials to Prevent Supporters from Using Arms

U.N. chief Ban Ki-moon lamented that the latest confrontation between March 8 and 14 forces was accompanied by “sectarian” and “inflammatory” remarks.

In his 15th report on the implementation of Security Council resolution 1701, Ban said Lebanon has been witnessing a political crisis over the Special Tribunal for Lebanon.

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Iran Navy Chief Brushes off Reports that Ships Carried Arms for Hizbullah

Iran's navy chief, Rear Admiral Habibollah Sayari, has said that Tehran's dispatch of two warships to the Mediterranean last week was not aggressive in aim.

"The Iranian strategy is to reinforce its defensive capacities. We do not harbor aggressive intentions against other countries," Sayari said at a press conference in Damascus on Monday.

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Indictment Technically Ready, Expected to be Distributed on March 7

Lebanon is expecting the arrival of a technical delegation from the Special Tribunal for Lebanon that is scheduled to meet with President Michel Suleiman and Caretaker Prime Minister Saad Hariri to place the finishing touches to the phase preceding the finalization of the indictment in the investigation into the assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.

Informed sources in the STL's functioning told the Central News Agency on Monday that Pre-trial Judge Daniel Fransen and Prosecutor Daniel Bellemare have completed their work sessions to come up with the indictment's final draft.

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Hariri Says Hizbullah's Arms 'a National Problem that Needs a National Solution'

Caretaker Prime Minister Saad Hariri on Monday stressed that Hizbullah's weapons have become a "national problem" which needs a "national solution."

Hariri called on the Hizbullah-led camp to "confess that this problem has become a national problem par excellence which needs a national solution par excellence, before anything else."

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March 8 Leaders to Meet within 48 Hours to Speed up Government Formation

Informed sources confirmed on Monday that a March 8 envoy visited Damascus last week where it held talks on the government formation process in Lebanon.

They told the Central News Agency that the envoy was informed that there will be no interference in the government formation process, adding that he received Damascus’ support for Prime Minister-designate Najib Miqati and a recommendation that Free Patriotic Movement leader MP Michel Aoun’s demands be taken into consideration.

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Jumblat: Weapons for Defending Lebanon from any Israeli Assault Should Remain

Progressive Socialist Party leader MP Walid Jumblat stated on Monday that the possession of arms between various Lebanese parties should be addressed, “but the main weapons to defend Lebanon against any Israeli assault should remain.”

He told France 24: “These arms are Lebanon’s defense and fortification … Lebanon should either side with the western Israeli front or the Arab Islamic one.”

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Geagea: Things Couldn’t Straighten up as Long as there is No Single State

Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea lamented on Monday that the situation in Lebanon wouldn’t improve as long as there isn’t a single state.

“Things couldn’t straighten up in a country where there is no single state,” Geagea said in reference to Hizbullah which the March 14 forces accuse of forming a state within the Lebanese state.

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Miqati’s Circles Snap Back at al-Mustaqbal Movement

Premier-designate Najib Miqati’s circles criticized al-Mustaqbal movement saying “it knew who to choose to snap back at us because it is aware that we don’t argue with our friend Samir al-Jisr.”

Al-Mustaqbal bloc MP al-Jisr accused Miqati in remarks published Sunday that the premier-designate wasn’t extending his hand to the March 14 forces.

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Arslan Urges Miqati to Ward Off Local-Foreign Pressure and Form the Cabinet

Lebanese Democratic Party leader Talal Arslan said there was no excuse in delaying the formation of the cabinet, stressing that neither the international tribunal’s indictment nor the March 14 stance would be in favor of Lebanon.

“I am not convinced of statements that call for waiting for the development of the situation internally and abroad,” Arslan told As Safir daily in remarks published Monday.

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