Jumblat: Criticizing Army at this Time Will Expose Lebanon to More Dangers

Progressive Socialist Party leader MP Walid Jumblat noted on Monday that “national responsibility” obligates all political camps to stand united behind the military institution in light of the army's battles with armed groups in the eastern town of Arsal.

He said in his weekly editorial in the PSP-affiliated al-Anbaa website: “Some irresponsible sides criticized the army and will expose it and Lebanon to more dangers.”

“These sides should instead be seeking to create conditions that will unite the Lebanese during this tense time,” he remarked.

On this note, he commended the recent position of Mustaqbal Movement leader MP Saad Hariri “who expressed his absolute support to the army, especially during this critical phase.”

Jumblat highlighted the need for all central political powers, which were foes in the past, to preserve the Lebanese entity, rise to the occasion, and meet the challenges of this current stage.

“They should steer clear of petty differences that will create superficial disputes that are pointless given the major developments in the region,” added the MP.

“National responsibility obligates all political powers to stand united behind the army and its sacrifices aimed at maintaining Lebanon's sovereignty,” he stressed.

At least 10 Lebanese troops have been killed and 25 others wounded while 13 troops have gone missing since the clashes with armed groups erupted in and around Arsal on Saturday. Dozens of gunmen have been killed or arrested in the fighting.

The battle started after the army arrested al-Nusra Front top official Imad Ahmed Jomaa.

On Sunday, army chief General Jean Qahwaji had however announced that the clashes were “premeditated” by the armed groups.

Tripoli MP Mohammed Kabbara of the Mustaqbal bloc described the incidents in Arsal as a “Syrian-Iranian conspiracy,” demanding a quick probe to “determine whether there is a legitimate cause for Jomaa's arrest.”



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