Aoun Rejects Hizbullah's Fighting in Syria: Some Local Powers Obstructed My Visit to Saudi Arabia

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Free Patriotic Movement leader MP Michel Aoun stated that Hizbullah's involvement in the fighting in Syria was an “individual initiative” that the party undertook, reported the pan-Arab daily al-Hayat on Saturday.

He told the daily: “We oppose intervention outside Lebanese territories and no understanding was reached between us and the party over this issue.”

“The resistance's involvement in Syria is part of an understanding between the party and the Syrians,” he added.

“The situation in Syria is very dangerous and we want democracy to prevail there, but at the same time, we fear the rise of groups, like the Nusra Front, whose ascension to power will have a negative effect on Lebanon,” he said.

“Any impact on Lebanon will not only affect Christians, but Sunnis and Shiites, meaning all Lebanese people,” he stressed.

“We are trying to steer Lebanon away from conflict and we have so far succeeded thanks to the will of foreign countries that managed to influence local sentiments,” Aoun stated.

Commenting on efforts to form a new government, Aoun said: “I think we are capable of building a state in Lebanon without waiting for the end of the crisis inn Syria.”

Asked about his ties with Saudi Arabia, the MP replied: “There are no fundamental obstacles in our relationship, but some Lebanese political powers made it appear as if I oppose the kingdom.”

“Saudi Arabia helps maintain Lebanon's stability and it strengthens its army,” he noted.

The FPM leader revealed that he was seeking to visit Saudi Arabia in 2006, but it was delayed.

He accused some sides, that he chose to leave unnamed, of intervening in his efforts to head to the kingdom until it was postponed “and the invitation disappeared.”

He added that former Premier Saad Hariri was among his main opponents, saying that a number of officials tried to mediate to allow his travel to Saudi Arabia, but they failed.

On his ties with Hariri, he commented: “We had our differences in the past, but they were resolved when we resigned from his cabinet” in 2011.

“Lebanon is his home and he is a political leader with his political weight,” he remarked.

Asked if he would accept traveling to Saudi Arabia even if his allies opposed it, he responded: “My acceptance of the invitation is the main factor.”

“My freedom has not died yet and we have an understanding, not an alliance” with local powers, he explained.

Comments 48
Thumb Roaring-FlameThrower 17 August 2013, 10:59

Yislam Timmak Ya General for these beautiful words of wisdom. Your keenness on visiting the Kingdom is testimony to your unwavering love of Lebanon and your principles. Yes, Lebanon is Harriri's home and he is a political leader with his political weight. Thank you for canceling Harriri's one way ticket that you issued 18 months ago. I am sure you got full refund for the ticket price and will get more once you visit the blessed Kingdom who helps maintain Lebanon's stability and strengthens the army. Tfehhhhh

Missing greatpierro 17 August 2013, 11:22

Indeed this is good news. It is now a duty for M14 including hariri and geagea to rech with an open hand to aoun in order to bring closer the political forces that believe in a democratic country based on strong governmental institutions.

It the responsibility of Aoun to take the cover off terrorist Hizbullah organization as much as it is the responsibility of M14 not to alienate Aoun and co.

Thumb lebnanfirst 17 August 2013, 21:37

Wow, an unexpected and rare piece of good news from Aoun! I agree with all those commentators who stressed that M14 should react positively to it. Although Aoun's history is not positive maybe, just maybe, he finally realized his previous errors in judgement. One would be right to feel wary of this about face but that must not prevent us from its seriously consideration.

Though I am not a fan of the general and still worry that this may be a new ploy in his quest for the كرسي, still I think we should give him the benefit of doubt. There is no denying that Aoun does command sizable followers among Christians (even if not a majority) and those followers are Lebanese's like the rest of us.

Hope strings eternal and this opportunity is worth exploring.

Thumb primesuspect 17 August 2013, 14:47

ze problema is that he didnt condemn the Hizballa adventures in Syria 2 years ago.... he only started dissociating himself about 2 months ago.... a little late to be forgiven.

Missing jingle_jangle 17 August 2013, 18:11

Gentlemen, 180 is the number you're looking for. 360 takes you back to the same place.

I would say this is more of a 90 degree turn. It's a move in the right direction though. I hope to see Aoun in reasonable land soon.

Missing rudy 17 August 2013, 11:00

Uff uff. Where was this a few years ago before ha evolved into a mercenary corporation. Would have saved us south trouble and chaos

Missing greatpierro 17 August 2013, 11:27

Islamist are indeed a problem. The best way to fight them is through a strong government, and strong democratic institutions.

The existence of HA as an armed militias, lately designated as a terrorist organization can only make matters worse. Indeed, HA intervention in Syria, the fact that it is a shiite organization representing Iran's interest, outside the rule of Lebanese justice and law, and descriminating against Sunnis and Christians alike can only justify the actions of terrorists islamists.

It is time for HA to become an only political group that endeavor to defends the interest of the shia community in particular and all lebanese in general under the law and justice of strong governmental institutions.

It is time for HA arms to integrate in a strong army helping lebanon to defends its borders at a time that danger is looming all around us.

Thumb primesuspect 17 August 2013, 14:48

¿ i don't get why any1 would thumb you down for wat u wrote ?

Missing greatpierro 17 August 2013, 16:13

must be southerner; he is a binary formatted former.

Missing samiam 17 August 2013, 12:00

so, aoun is now backing away from his complete agreement with hizb iran's involvement in syria--it's a good start. maybe it will lead somewhere (probably mysterious rockets in rabiyah)

Thumb makhaleh 17 August 2013, 12:54

So is this cloun turning his back away from HA maybe he is realizing who nasrallah is i guess he stopped smoking weed and started using his lil brain inside that huge alien type head he has hopefully this M8 M14 crap is gonna end we all have unity amomgst us

Thumb proudlebanon 17 August 2013, 13:10

While I don't like GMA one bit, there is something scary here that you all need to notice.

Jumblatt and Aoun have both made recent attempts to fix relations with Saudi Arabia - both were snubbed and ignored, despite the fact that this is a huge political win for M14.

The fact that KSA is not capitalizing on these wins that would have been considered political miracles pre-2011 says something about their plans for Lebanon. And these plans include a forced hegemony through a post-Assad regime in Syria.

We need to band together and protect Lebanon. But will it be possible with the knife in our back that is Hezbollah?

Thumb proudlebanon 17 August 2013, 13:21

Thank you phoenix, your posts are the best ones on this website.

As for Aoun, it seems he is seeking a detente (cooling the situation down), with Berri also secretly doing the same. They are acting responsibly for now, but HA has gone completely out of control.

Thumb proudlebanon 17 August 2013, 13:29

His envoy waited for 4 days before meeting any Saudi officials, and the official that they met were low level. The meeting did not make news on Al Arabiya either. Compare this to the bigger and warmer reception that Jumblat used to get and you see a scary picture. Hopefully the KSA officials truly are too busy with bigger fish to fry in Syria rather than purposefully snubbing non-Sunni politicians from Lebanon (and I say that as a Sunni).

Thumb proudlebanon 17 August 2013, 13:31

Obviously Naharnet didn't put it in those words, but the delegation of a big party in Lebanon waiting for 4 days before meeting officials that are not high ranked is definitely a snub in my opinion.

Thumb proudlebanon 17 August 2013, 13:31

Then again you never know with Jumblatt. We will see I guess.

Thumb primesuspect 17 August 2013, 14:49

he deserves slaps.... i'd snub him as well i were saudi.

Thumb primesuspect 17 August 2013, 14:50

i don't trust lebanese........

let's perhaps trust in ourselves before trusting fellow countrymen.

Thumb proudlebanon 17 August 2013, 15:18

Thank you!

Missing 5.56 17 August 2013, 15:25

ksa is not iran, not able and not wanting to control lebanon, they understand that its a multireligious country with strong christian history. All they want is a country non-aligned on iran's policies...

Thumb makhaleh 17 August 2013, 15:26

I like ur comment...the war in syria is being lost as we see and HA is on a terror list when we took back most of our land fron israel was through unity not just HA all of libnan was one and if we need to overcome all obstacles that libnan is facing present and future we need to band as one again
Proudlebanon u spoke gr8 words and i agree with u 100 precent

Thumb proudlebanon 17 August 2013, 15:29

Merci hbb

Thumb proudlebanon 17 August 2013, 22:58


Regardless if Jumblat was not there, it was his envoy representing him. It seems that KSA are displeased with his recent stances regarding the cabinet formation. You must see that his delegation waiting for several days before meeting with low ranking officials is somewhat a snub, don't you?

Default-user-icon Hammerhead (Guest) 17 August 2013, 13:31

It is apparent that the walls are caving in on HA, and what does Aoun do, he jumps ship.
He should have given this speech wearing a new set of pyjamas.
As for welcoming him back into the fold, I personally believe that he should be banished with a one way ticket to hell, his political cover of HA has caused us enough anguish and suffering.

Default-user-icon trueself (Guest) 17 August 2013, 14:10

This is the first time I commend Aoun on his rational thinking and in putting lebanon first. The Christians would only gain from the establishment of a democratic state in Syria. Lebanon could also be called upon to help in establishing democracy in Syria due to its democratic nature of regime it always had. Syria under Assad was the cause of Lebanon's problems. lebanon would have been a paradise had the Assad Family not been in existence or at least not in power. lebanon and Syria could become a potent power due to having same borders and same type of mentality. I am just waiting for the time Syria gets liberated. I am not scared of the fanatics in Syria because they are minority and will be rooted out once Syria is Liberated.

Default-user-icon Grail Knight (Guest) 17 August 2013, 14:11

He chose.. poorly.

Default-user-icon trueself (Guest) 17 August 2013, 14:14

Saudi arabia is a blessing for Lebanon. Qatar and the UAE are also formidable allies to the Lebanon. We the Lebanese are greatly liked in the Gulf states, especially in saudi Arabia. Saudi Arabia has only the good of Lebanon in its heart. We might be a small nation in number, yet our importance in the Arab world is much larger than anyone could imagine. I lived there and know first hand how the Gulf States treat us.

Default-user-icon trueself (Guest) 17 August 2013, 14:22

I always though that Aoun would one day return to the folds of those who put Lebanon first. We all need to give this person the benefit of the doubt and hope that he be as usual the voice of true Lebanon. Good on you Aoun and God bless you.

Thumb primesuspect 17 August 2013, 14:52

both aoun and jumby are hopeless

Thumb jabal10452 17 August 2013, 15:10

The LF/Kataeb should immediately take the lead and try to mend fences with the FPM. With a little luck the rest of M14 would follow. But I'm not holding my breath.
It is imperative that HA finally gets the message that this going-it-alone attitude to foreign policy is aleinating ever growing numbers of Lebanese. This might bring HN to his senses. HA must be disarmed. period.

Thumb makhaleh 17 August 2013, 15:20

Ofcourse he cant be trusted he sold his country b4 y qouldnt he do it again and again he is an insukt to lebanon and tje lebanese pple

Thumb makhaleh 17 August 2013, 15:27

Well spoken

Thumb Sanelebanese 17 August 2013, 15:36

It's sad, how most Lebanese put a lot of weight on regional alliances. No difference between the devil and satan, between Iran and KSA.. KSA support of current Egyptian government massacring its own people under the name of terrorism, is no different than the beginning of the Syrian revolution, when Bashar was killing innocent demonstrators. Each time the population attempt to rise against their dictator, they label them as terrorist. Syria,Bharain, Egypt, KSA : dictators, military, autocratic...all types of regimes, but none is democratic.

Thumb beiruti 17 August 2013, 15:56

le petite generale it seems is gone begging. The Iranian milk from the Persian tit seems to have dried up, or it has been taken out of his mouth. Now he seeks succor from the King of Saudi Arabia. Another beggar who tries to pass himself as some sort of leader.

Another who has killed his parents and then cries that he has become a homeless orphan.

These guys keeps shitting in their own nest and then complaining of the stink that they themselves have created.

When will the Lebanese stop giving these people their support? When?

Missing greatpierro 17 August 2013, 16:16

FT you are such a aoun lover freak. Aoun a statesman that is the best joke of the afternoon.

Missing karim_m1- 17 August 2013, 16:39

"“Saudi Arabia helps maintain Lebanon's stability and it strengthens its army,” he noted."

I am an FPMer, but I disagree completely with General Aoun here and can't imagine what he's thinking. NO COUNTRY in the WORLD has done more to destabilize Lebanon and export terrorism to Lebanon than Saudi Arabia.

Thumb cedre 17 August 2013, 17:43

u're right, KSA killings lebanese politicians, journalists, using samaha to plot false flags, bringing missiles and weapons in lebanon, kidnapping people, making checkpoints, killing lebanese demonstrators, laundering money, dealing drugs...

Thumb proudlebanon 17 August 2013, 22:38

If you think that most Lebanese are like Aoun that they will accept to destroy their country for a few dollars, you are wrong. KSA has the money, but its Lebanese allies not willing to welcome the salafis and organize a militia. Whereas, Iran has partners willing to not only organize a militia, but kill fellow Lebanese.

Missing pureleb 17 August 2013, 17:42

This is great news and M14 must capitalize on it. I am a strong supporter and advocate for the Lebanese forces but if they don't change their rhetoric toward Aoun today then it will be proven with no doubts what Aoun had been saying all along that they were trying to isolate him and I and many of us will join FPM because M14 shouldn't ignore his initiative

Missing pureleb 17 August 2013, 18:06

In Lebanese politics your enemy today is your ally tomorrow. There is nothing to loose if we extend our hand to him till he proves us wrong. Do I trust the man, to be honest NO but I am willing to give him a chance. Must remember that this came a day after nastallah's speech rather the usual Tuesday's press conference. I will do whatever it takes to help my country and there is no fear as long as I stick to my beliefs

Missing jingle_jangle 17 August 2013, 18:15

I think Aoun is seeing the writing on the wall:
1. Assad regime is over. It's only a matter of time - whether that is two months or 10 years, it'll crumble.
2. Hezbollah is only interested in self-preservation, and Aoun's fan base is becoming increasingly aware of this.
3. Even Iran is attempting to reach to the West now, and the implications on Hezbollah can't be positive.

Bottom line is that alienating KSA, Hariri and all Sunnis is bad policy.

Thumb beiruti 17 August 2013, 20:07

Your comment assumes Aoun van read, has a brain and can process reality

Missing cowboymicho 17 August 2013, 18:55

Wow, finally he says something that makes sense.

Default-user-icon Mirage (Guest) 17 August 2013, 19:17

@ Everybody, M8 and M14 are both in the bad direction, But Aoun and Geagea, although i think both are crazy, and both are still fighting each other politically, i think they have done well to balance christians one part with sunniites and one with chiites. If it was done on purpose it is very good. If not , also good. But what i think right now is that General Aoun cannot anymore support Hezbollah for his immediate involvement in the syrian crisis, because sooner or later, even chiites will turn on them for their political decision of fighting in Syria because they are starting to feel it in Dahieh. All parties , whether sunniites or shiites should abstain completely from involvement in Syria. It will only bring despair and misery.

Default-user-icon Mirage (Guest) 17 August 2013, 19:18

Lets solve our differences, and add ourselves to talks with Israel on regaining all our lands diplomatically with the palestinians negotiating, as for giving them back palestinians in camps in Leb. Then lets disarm hezbollah and give it the control of a brigade where its fighters would be responsible of the south. Integrate it to the sole command of the lebanese army. thats the way to go.

Thumb general_puppet 17 August 2013, 20:37

You never know what the x-genaral will say from one day to the next... but having said that, I think that after Nasrarllah's psychopathic speech, Aoun wants to say that Hizbullah's actions in Syria are not part of his agreement and are not in Lebanon's interest. That is a step in the right direction.

Missing cedars 18 August 2013, 05:57

Aoun and Jumblat make a great BF and GF. What they speak off on Monday gets reversed by Thu..this is how they entertain the citizens...

Default-user-icon Morcos (Guest) 18 August 2013, 08:55

FlameTT is very silent these days .Don't blame him he has a bad case of ar7a to treat ...