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Al-Rahi: State Can’t Be Built over Statelets, Each Party Formed its Own State

Maronite Patriarch Beshara al-Rahi described on Friday the incident at one of the Telecommunications Ministry buildings on Thursday as unfortunate, lamenting the lack of responsibility demonstrated by the political class.

He said: “The state cannot be built over statelets and each political party has formed its own state under its own authority.”

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Arab Socialist Baath Party Founder Disappears in Aley

A founder of the Arab Socialist Baath Party, Shebli al-Aisaimi, has disappeared in Aley, pan-Arab al-Hayat newspaper reported on Friday.

Al-Aisaimi, 87, was last seen on Thursday afternoon while exercising at al-Zouhour street.

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March 8: Suleiman Should End Rifi’s ‘Rebellion’ in his Role as Commander-in-Chief

The March 8 forces said that as commander-in-chief of the armed forces, President Michel Suleiman should resolve the Telecommunications Ministry crisis and force all security forces to abide by his decisions.

A high-ranking March 8 source told As Safir daily in remarks published Friday that amid a caretaking cabinet and Interior Minister Ziad Baroud’s decision to absolve himself from his duties, the responsibility of Suleiman lies in addressing the issue as all security forces become his subordinates.

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Estonian Delegation Follows up the Probe into the Abduction of 7 Tourists

An Estonian security delegation toured the industrial area of the eastern city of Zahle where seven Estonian tourists were abducted more than two months ago, the pan-Arab al-Hayat newspaper reported on Friday.

Informed security sources said that “the aim of the visit might be connected with the abductees’ statement in their last video… saying that the Estonian state doesn’t care about them.”

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Suleiman Asks Rifi to Pull ISF Out of Telecom Building, Mulls Prosecution’s Involvement

President Michel Suleiman has reportedly ordered Internal Security Forces chief Maj. Gen. Ashraf Rifi to clear a building affiliated with the Telecommunications Ministry from his men after they prevented Caretaker Telecom Minister Charbel Nahhas from entering the facility on Thursday.

Sources close to Suleiman told several Beirut dailies published Friday that after the president studied the issue legally and constitutionally, he told Rifi to abide by Caretaker Interior Minister Ziad Baroud’s order to pull his forces out of the building in Beirut’s al-Adliyeh area.

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Hariri ‘Doesn’t Object’ that Judicial Authorities Follow-up Actions of Nahhas

Caretaker Prime Minister Saad Hariri has urged the judicial authority to follow-up the attempt by Caretaker Telecommunications Minister Charbel Nahhas “to put his hands on the third telecommunications network,” a statement released by his press office said.

Hariri stressed that “he doesn’t object that the competent judicial authority takes up this issue to determine why the Minister of Telecommunications overruled the decisions of the Council of Ministers,” said the press release.

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Baroud Ends his Duties as Caretaker Minister: An Acting Minister Can Carry Out this Mission

Caretaker Interior Minister Ziad Baroud announced on Thursday that he will no longer carry out his duties as a caretaker minister.

He said during a press conference in response to this morning’s incidents at one of the Telecommunications Ministry buildings in the Adlieh district: “It appears to me that reason in Lebanon has taken a holiday and the law has become a point of view.”

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U.S. Embassy Delegation Inspects Syrian Refugees Situation in North

A delegation from the U.S. Embassy in Lebanon traveled to northern Lebanon on Thursday to follow up on the status of Syrian civilians who have fled the violence in Syria, the embassy announced in a statement.

“The delegation also investigated press reports that Lebanese security agencies have repatriated some of these displaced people to Syria against their will,” the embassy added.

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Miqati Vows to Cooperate with March 8, 14 after Cabinet Formation

Premier-designate Najib Miqati vowed on Thursday to cooperate with both the March 8 and 14 forces as soon his new government receives the vote of confidence of parliament.

In remarks to a delegation from the Beirut Traders Association, Miqati said his approach to the formation of the cabinet focuses on “preservation of stability, prevention of strife and holding onto the constitution and the consolidation of the national economy.”

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Nahhas on Being Prevented from Dismantling OGERO Station: Intelligence Bureau Staging Coup

Caretaker Telecommunications Minister Charbel Nahhas described on Thursday the morning’s developments at the Telecommunications Ministry “as a coup led by the Internal Security Forces’ Intelligence Bureau.”

Earlier during the day, the ISF had prevented Nahhas, a number of directors, and a technical team from entering one of the ministry buildings at Adlieh.

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