Raad: Mustaqbal Bloc Changed Position on Extending Parliament's Mandate at U.S. Ordersإقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
Head of the Loyalty to the Resistance bloc MP Mohammed Raad reiterated on Friday his bloc's support for the extension of the term of parliament, accusing the Musatqbal bloc of going back on its agreement to back the extension.
He revealed: “We reached an agreement with the Mustaqbal bloc to extend its mandate, but the United States then announced that it opposed such a measure.”
“The bloc was consequently prompted to stage the parliamentary elections based on the 1960 law,” he added.
The MP noted that the United States is pressuring officials in Lebanon to stage the elections and overrule the extension decision.
“You at first accepted the extension, but now you want to stage the elections at the United States' behest,” he said in reference to the Mustaqbal bloc.
Moreover, Raad remarked that the recent developments at the Constitutional Council regarding the extension are “purely democratic practices.”
“Members of the Council are entitled to hinder quorum if they believe that their views will not be taken into consideration,” he explained.
In addition, he noted that it is only normal for a delay to take place in the government formation process, linking it to reaching a solution over staging the parliamentary elections.
The Council was expected to meet earlier this week in order to address petitions filed by President Michel Suleiman and the Change and Reform bloc earlier this month to challenge the 17-month extension of parliament’s four-year term.
Three judges - two Shiites and a Druze - boycotted a meeting of the Council for the second day in a row on Wednesday, depriving the 10-member body of the quorum needed to rule on the petitions.
The absence of the three judges was a clear sign of political interference and an attempt by several officials to prevent the Council from issuing a decision on the petitions.
The lack of quorum would make the 17-month extension law valid after the end of parliament's mandate on June 20.