Report: Term of Basbous to be Extended by Three Months in Attempt to Delay Cabinet Collapse

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The term of Interior Security Forces chief Major General Ibrahim Basbous could be renewed for three months to end the controversial appointments crisis that is threatening to submerge the state into void, media reports said Monday.

As Safir newspaper reported that the political arch-foes are seeking to agree on the extension of Basbous' term by three months to postpone the controversial crisis until September, when the term of Army Commander General Jean Qahwaji ends.

The two deadlines then could be discussed as one package, the daily reported.

Basbous is set to retire on June 4.

Sources close to Free Patriotic Movement leader MP Michel Aoun, who eminently rejects the renewal of high-ranking security officials' terms and demands the appointment of new figures, told As Safir that the Change and Reform bloc will not agree on such a proposal.

Aoun, according to the sources, had been promised that his son-in-law and Commando Regiment chief Brig. Gen. Chamel Roukoz would be appointed as army chief if he facilitated the appointment of a new ISF chief.

However, the FPM chief also rejects the suggestion as “he doesn't trust their pledges and fears that he might be tricked.”

The military posts in Lebanon are suffering as the result of the months-long presidential vacuum in light of the parliament's failure to elect a successor for Michel Suleiman whose tenure ended in May last year.

The FPM chief has previously bluntly rejected any attempts to extend the terms of high-ranking security and military officials, threatening to resign from cabinet.

Media reports had said that Aoun's main objective is to receive political consensus on the appointment of Roukoz as army chief as part of a package for the appointment of other top security officers.

Aoun however denied that he had made such a proposal.

Roukoz's tenure ends in October.

As Safir reported that Hizbullah, Aoun's staunch ally, will support the FPM in any decision it takes concerning the appointments limbo.

“The cabinet will automatically be paralyzed if Hizbullah and FPM ministers boycotted its sessions,” sources close to the March 8 coalition told the daily.

Interior Minister Nouhad al-Mashnouq, who has been insisting on his right to name the new ISF chief, told As Safir that he has no proposals to resolve the crisis.

“I have nothing so far and contacts failed to reach a breakthrough,” Mashnouq stressed, pointing out that he “will take the right decision at the right time.”

Information Minister Ramzi Jreij told al-Liwaa newspaper that contacts are ongoing to defuse tension and resolve the crisis, noting the cabinet shouldn't be paralyzed over a matter that could be adjourned.



Comments 5
Default-user-icon roukuz (Guest) 01 June 2015, 08:12

I often wonder how you are dear flamethrower as you lay in pieces and tranquility at your final resting place. RIP Shia Hero

Default-user-icon the_roar (Guest) 01 June 2015, 08:13

does anybody know why flamethrower has been banned and humiliated?

Missing humble 01 June 2015, 10:00

Because he is not humble.

Default-user-icon +oua nabka + (Guest) 01 June 2015, 08:14

god bless the swedish prime minister
god bless the iraqi prime minister
god bless democracy

Missing humble 01 June 2015, 09:52

Caporal is a mareed man. Fact.