The Mideastwire Blog

Excerpts from the Arab and Iranian Media & Analysis of US Policy in the Region

Remember when Hariri almost cut a deal rejecting the Tribunal?

From the Daily star archives…. January 2011. Instructive to draw out Nasrallah’s wider, and less well backed up charge from the other day.

My favorite part is the “agreeing but not signing” bit on Hariri’s part!

Hariri, Berri trade accusations on failed Saudi-Syrian initiative
By The Daily Star

BEIRUT: Speaker Nabih Berri and caretaker Prime Minister Saad Hariri traded over the weekend accusations on the failed Syrian-Saudi brokered agreement to break the deadlock over the U.N.-backed tribunal investigating former statesman Rafik Hariri’s assassination.

The debate escalated after Hariri denied that he along with Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah had signed a compromise agreement based on the Syrian-Saudi initiative as some media reports interpreted Progressive Socialist Party leader MP Walid Jumblatt’s statements as implying.

Jumblatt said Friday that he supported the Saudi-Syrian initiative “because it provided a solution for the current crisis,” adding that it had been endorsed by all the parties, including Syrian President Bashar Assad, Hariri and Nasrallah.

Hariri’s press office said in a statement that the Future Movement leader had agreed to but not signed the Saudi-Syrian brokered compromise which had also been backed by Qatar.

The statement added that the deal, contrary to circulating media reports, was a comprehensive arrangement rather than one only relating to the U.N.-backed court, which is widely expected to point the finger at Hezbollah members in Rafik Hariri’s assassination

Media reports said the compromise called on Saad Hariri to end the Lebanese Cabinet’s cooperation with court, withdraw Lebanese judges and halt Lebanon’s funding of the court while the March 8 coalition had to relinquish its demand to refer the “false witnesses” issue to the Judicial Council.

Among the other issues called for by Hariri was the withdrawal of a Syrian summons of a number of Lebanese state officials and the dismantling of armed Palestinian groups outside refugee camps.

“The road map is not one that is limited to what Jumblatt has mentioned but rather a step in a long diplomatic and political course that should have led to a comprehensive equation for national reconciliation that ensures the implementation of the Taif Accord, among other issues,” Hariri’s statement said.

Hariri’s press office was responding to a statement by Berri, who called on the Future Movement to halt its provocative sectarian rhetoric under the pretext of defending the post of the premiership.

A statement by Berri’s press office said Hariri’s coalition had put forward before the Qatari and Turkish foreign ministers a proposal other than the one that had been brokered by Riyadh and Damascus in a bid to obstruct efforts to end the political crisis. “The group who proposed a comprehensive agreement for national reconciliation through the formation of a national unity Cabinet, the implementation of the Taif Accord and the commitment to the Doha Accord is the opposition rather than March 14,” Berri’s press office said.

The statement added the agreement called for a rotation in the allotment of key ministerial portfolios among religious factions to put an end to graft, a reference to the Finance Ministry’s allocation to the Future Movement multiple times between 1992 and 2011.

However, Hariri snapped back at Berri saying it was unnecessary to comment on the speaker’s remarks “when he lectures about corruption going on for over more than two decades.”

Hariri’s press office said Berri had been a major pillar of Lebanon’s governing coalition during the period that witnessed corruption, which the speaker has blamed on late former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.





Written by nickbiddlenoe

December 5, 2011 at 8:39 pm

Posted in Uncategorized

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