Bassil warns against 'bypassing' Christians in presidential vote
Free Patriotic Movement chief Jebran Bassil met with Maronite Patriarch Beshara al-Rahi on Wednesday evening after which he warned against “bypassing the Christian component” in the presidential vote.
“There can be no solution except through the election of a president,” Bassil said from Bkirki after the talks.
“There can be no solution except through dialogue and there can be no election except through consensus,” he added.
“That’s why we reiterate our call for dialogue and rapprochement with everyone and Bkirki is the most appropriate place for such a dialogue,” Bassil went on to say.
Noting that the presidential post is for all Lebanese, the FPM chief, however, stressed that “no one can bypass the Christian component in it.”
“We will not allow such attempts to pass,” he emphasized.
Bassil added: “We view any remarks about bypassing the Christian component with a lot of negativity.”
And noting that “Christians should seek to have their main say in this juncture,: Bassil said that “the initiative remains in the hand of the patriarch” and that the FPM “will cooperate with any such initiative.”
Bassil’s remarks come a day after MP Ali Hassan Khalil said that Hezbollah and the Amal Movement are willing to push for Suleiman Franjieh’s election as president with 65 votes even if he does not win the support of any of the two main Christian blocs – the FPM and the Lebanese Forces.