Saad Hariri’s return: Are there external “pressures” behind the assignment of...

  • Media Follow-up Section
  • BBC

23 October 2020

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Arab newspapers reported the decision to assign the head of the “Future Movement”, Saad Hariri, to form a new Lebanese government.

Al-Hariri was assigned after obtaining the majority of the votes cast in the parliamentary consultations he conducted. This comes a year after he stepped down following the outbreak of popular protests.

“The challenge is formation”

Rai Al-Youm newspaper says in its editorial that Hariri’s assignment “sets a unique precedent not in Lebanon, but in the entire Arab region. This is the first time in the history of the Arab revolutions, one of which overthrew a prime minister due to charges of financial, economic and political corruption, to return to his post, and a year later.” Completely and completely. “

The newspaper adds, “But this time on the back of a French initiative and American pressure, and imposed negotiations with the Israeli occupation state to demarcate the Lebanese maritime borders with occupied Palestine under the supervision of the United Nations, leading to the start of gas and oil exploration.”

Today’s opinion continues: “Lebanese analysts agree that the assignment is easy, but the challenge lies in the formation, and the victory of the fourth Hariri government with the confidence of a parliament in which there are two opposition blocs, namely the resistance bloc, Hezbollah, and the Free Patriotic Movement bloc led by Mr. Gebran Bassil, the archenemy of Mr. Hariri, and none of the two blocs named him, Mr. Hariri only got 65 votes in the parliamentary consultations conducted by President Aoun out of a total of 128 deputies, and 53 abstentions from naming, and this is a low and fragile approval rating that makes the continuation of the new government, and its success in the hands of the supposed opposition movement. “.

The Lebanese Al-Akhbar newspaper says in its editorial: “Saad Hariri returned to the fore without a mask. His resignation was not in response to the demands of the October 17 uprising, nor was his return a popular demand. He returned because he considered the premiership his natural right. He returned promising that he himself, who was one of the reasons. The collapse, he holds a project to get out of this collapse. “

The newspaper adds, “It is not clear which path to take. Will the coup initiated by Mustafa Adeeb be completed by trying to impose new norms that cross the balance of power in the House of Representatives, or he seeks political understandings to form a government of specialists?” The Free Patriotic Movement: Does the work mechanism differ between commissioning and authoring, or does it insist on excluding it, so that the President of the Republic is on the lookout?

Al-Akhbar sees that Hariri “when he resigned a year ago, he had the opportunity again to come armed with the reform paper that was approved by the Council of Ministers before his resignation. Taking to let the ship face drowning. “

The newspaper goes on to say: “Today, when (the ship) is about to sink, it is intended to float. Upon resignation, it was said that the decision or advice came from Jared Kushner, US President Donald ’s son-in-law and his advisor. Is the return today protected by other advice related to demarcation negotiations and an atmosphere of regional calm?” From Yemen to Baghdad, through Syria and Lebanon?

Al-Akhbar concludes by saying: “Whoever knows Hariri realizes that his insistence on obtaining the assignment is not the result of his ideas. Without an instruction, he cannot take risks. The instruction cannot be French only, and more than an expression of concern for the French initiative.”

Facilitating Hariri’s Mission

The Egyptian newspaper Al-Youm Al-Sabea quoted Lebanese political analyst Bechara Khairallah as saying that “the parties are required to facilitate Hariri’s mission in order to form the government, because the current stage is exceptional, and it may be the last opportunity to secure the required reforms and keep pace with the French initiative, in light of the American facilitation.”

Khairallah stressed that “all political forces have no other candidate except Hariri, that is, they are obligated to facilitate the task of the Prime Minister-designate to put an end to the collapse and stop the bleeding in preparation for securing reforms, that is, not to put the stick in the wheels of forming the government.”

In the London-based Al-Arab newspaper, Khairallah Khairallah says: “It is not yet known why more time is wasted in Lebanon, while logic says that any delay in forming the government, in light of Saad Hariri’s mandate to form a government, makes saving what can be saved closer than an impossible task.”

He adds, “Some people will say that Saad Hariri is not a specialist, but rather a political person. The response to that is very simple. The position of the Prime Minister in Lebanon is a political one, and it is better for a politician to take it so that the Sunnis do not feel unfair.”

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