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Baabda Sources: No Mediation between Suleiman, Aoun

There are no mediation efforts between President Michel Suleiman and Free Patriotic Movement leader Michel Aoun who has created controversy after verbally attacking the head of state and several cabinet ministers, Baabda sources told pan-Arab daily Asharq al-Awsat.

The sources called for calm before any steps to reconcile the two officials.

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Marouni: Aoun Plays a Central Role in Plan to Prevent Establishment of a Strong State

Phalange Party bloc MP Elie Marouni stated Wednesday that Free Patriotic Movement leader MP Michel Aoun is a central player in the plan to prevent the establishment of a strong state.

He told Asharq al-Awsat daily that the MP is charged with creating strife among the Christians in Lebanon, saying that his recent attack against President Michel Suleiman is unjustified.

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Saqr: Syria Will Make an Apology after the Announcement of the Indictment

MP Oqab Saqr noted Wednesday that whenever attempts are made to improve ties with Syria, there are some sides that try to thwart these efforts.

He told LBC that once the relationship between Prime Minister Saad Hariri and Syrian President Bashar al-Assad improved, the premier apologized for mistakes made against Syria after the assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.

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U.N.: Up to Bellemare to Decide How to Proceed with Tribunal Work

The United Nations stressed Tuesday that it was committed to the decisions that the Special Tribunal for Lebanon would make and expressed trust in Prosecutor Daniel Bellemare.

"It's up to the tribunal to determine how its work proceeds and we expect that any development on the ground, if they have any impact, would be assessed by the tribunal accordingly," said Farhan Haq, Deputy Spokesperson for Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon.

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Hariri in Mecca to Perform Omra, Extends Greetings to Lebanese

Prime Minister Saad Hariri traveled to Mecca on Tuesday to perform the Omra and spend the Eid al-Fitr holidays with his family.

On Wednesday, Hariri extended greetings to the Lebanese on the occasion of Eid al-Fitr and expressed regret for not welcoming well-wishers for being in Mecca.

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Assad Meets Sayyed

Syrian President Bashar Assad held talks with former head of the General Security Department Maj. Gen. Jamil al-Sayyed who will hold a press conference soon to make announcements about his lawsuit against several Lebanese personalities in Syrian courts.

Sayyed's media office said the meeting that lasted two hours in Damascus touched on the general situation.

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Aoun: Sunday, I Held Ministers Accountable for Shortcomings, Today I Say they're Guilty of Avoiding Duties

Free Patriotic Movement leader MP Michel Aoun stated Tuesday that he did not launch a campaign against President Michel Suleiman last Sunday, instead saying that "those who defended him are the ones who insulted him."

Addressing the criticism against ministers, he said after the FPM's weekly meeting: "On Sunday, I held the ministers accountable for shortcomings, but today I say they are guilty of avoiding their responsibilities."

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Mustaqbal: We Reject Attacks against the President and Government

The Mustaqbal bloc condemned on Tuesday the recent attacks and accusations against President Michel Suleiman, Prime Minister Saad Hariri, and other officials.

It said after its weekly meeting headed by former Premier Fouad Saniora that these positions are rejected, and instead commended Suleiman and Hariri for their roles in "bolstering national unity and protecting the constitution and institutions."

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Bassil Defends Aoun, Calls for Constitutional Amendment to President's Powers

Energy and Water Minister Jebran Bassil defended his father-in-law, Free Patriotic Movement leader Michel Aoun, and called for a constitutional amendment to boost the President's powers.

Bassil was responding to reactions that emerged following Aoun's verbal attack on President Michel Suleiman.

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Qaouq: Trying False Witnesses and Those behind Them Natural Solution to End Crisis

Hizbullah's official in southern Lebanon Sheikh Nabil Qaouq stressed Monday that all sides in Lebanon have agreed that trying false witnesses in the assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri may be the natural solution to the current crisis in Lebanon.

He said that the false witnesses have misled the investigation and caused an internal political crisis in the country, as well as harmed Lebanese-Syrian relations for five years.

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