Suleiman Calls Lack of Quorum 'Undemocratic,' Says Syria Should Reject Meddling by Lebanese Parties

President Michel Suleiman on Friday appealed for the election of a “made in Lebanon” head of state, rejected foreign interference in the presidential elections and called the boycott of the polls “undemocratic.”

“The presidential and parliamentary elections should be held on time and vacuum avoided,” Suleiman told Lebanese diplomats at Baabda Palace.

“The election of a president should be made in Lebanon although … some countries encourage the Lebanese to practice their democratic rights,” he said.

“Their role should be limited to holding the elections on time,” he added.

“Lack of quorum is undemocratic,” Suleiman stressed in reference to the March 8 alliance's boycott of the presidential elections.

In the first round, March 8 lawmakers cast blank ballots and then pulled out from the legislative session, resulting in a lack in the needed two-thirds quorum.

During the second round of the polls, the same MPs, except for the members of Speaker Nabih Berri's bloc, boycotted the session, creating fears of vacuum in the country's top Christian post.

Suleiman leaves Baabda Palace on May 25.

The president said in his speech that the national dialogue should continue to be held.

“Its decisions should also be implemented,” he said, citing the disarmament of Palestinian camps, the implementation of the Baabda Declaration and the agreement on a defense strategy.

In a clear reference to Hizbullah's involvement in Syria's war, Suleiman told the diplomats that “Syria should not accept for any side from Lebanon to interfere in its affairs.”

Iran, Gulf countries and Europe should do the same, he said.

“No one should encourage making Lebanon a passage for interference in Syria,” he said.

Hizbullah has been instrumental in helping the regime of President Bashar Assad in making gains in the war with the rebels seeking to topple him.

Suleiman called for a review of agreements signed between Lebanon and Syria.

“We hold onto special ties with Syria and with all the Syrians,” he said.



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