Gemayel Hopes Aoun-Geagea Talks Would Salvage the Republic

Kataeb Party leader Amin Gemayel welcomed the expected talks between Free Patriotic Movement chief MP Michel Aoun and Samir Geagea, the head of the Lebanese Forces.

“We encourage dialogue between all (party) leaderships to salvage the Republic,” Gemayel told al-Mustaqbal newspaper in remarks published on Monday.

He hoped the dialogue between Aoun and Geagea would lead to positive results.

Gemayel also expressed hope that the talks between them would focus on “saving the constitutional institutions, which have reached a state of decay.”

He stated that he had no information or details about the expected talks but that he encourages efforts to preserve the interest of the nation.

Reports have said that Melhem Riachi, chairman of the LF communication department, and MP Ibrahim Kanaan from Aoun's Change and Reform bloc are holding meetings away from the media spotlight to prepare the agenda for the dialogue between the FPM chief and Geagea.

Kanaan told As Safir daily on Monday that the talks could create a basis for a joint mission.

“We cannot disagree on constitutional issues linked to partnership and (the division of) power,” he said.

Highly-informed sources also said that consultations on the agenda are reaching a breakthrough with the presidential crisis as a first item.

Both Aoun and Geagea have announced their candidacies for the presidency. Their differences, in addition to the rivalry between the March 8 and 14 alliances, have left the presidential post vacant.

President Michel Suleiman's term ended in May.



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