Former PMs met at the Center House: To adopt serious orientation to halt economic deterioration

NNA - Former Prime Minister Saad Hariri received this afternoon at the Center House former Prime Ministers Najib Mikati, Fouad Siniora, and Tamam Salam. Discussions tackled the latest political developments.

After the meeting, Premier Siniora read the following statement:

“Former Prime Ministers Najib Mikati, Fouad Siniora, Saad Hariri and Tamam Salam held a meeting at the Center House that issued the following:

Lebanon is going through a deep political, economic, financial, monetary and socio-economic crisis. The situation deteriorated recently and threatens to reach a serious national crisis unless the presidency and its government change their policies immediately, return to respecting the constitution, laws and the interest of the Lebanese state, and focus on adopting the measures that can alleviate the suffering of the country and the citizens.

The current government, chosen by the Mandate and its political allies, has unfortunately turned into a tool for settling political scores and for revenge practices, and became a platform for throwing accusations and initiating conflicts in all directions, as well as a barrage behind which some personal maliciousness and presidential aspirations hide, unconcerned about the Taef Accord, the constitution, the implementation of laws, or the interest of the Lebanese state.

The daily suffering of the Lebanese is getting worse every day, and will intensify, unless the Mandate and the Lebanese government regain the lost trust locally and on the Arab and International levels, financially and politically.

Therefore, and out of national responsibility, and the keenness on the higher national interest that requires overcoming differences to save our homeland from what it is in, we call on the President and the government to take the following steps:

1- Adopt a serious orientation and will to halt the economic, financial and monetary deterioration in agreement with the International Monetary Fund, as the only international institution that has become accredited and relied on by the most countries of the international community, to give the necessary credibility to any economic plan that the Lebanese state adheres to.

2- Approve the reform that must be adopted without any delay, instead of diverting attention from the real causes of problems, and fabricating political battles that will only lead to more tension in the country, and waste resources and opportunities to put an end to the crises engulfing Lebanon.

3- Stop attempts to transform the Lebanese system from a parliamentary democratic system to a presidential system, and stop targeting the powers of the premiership to make it obedient to the small ambitions or hatreds of some, and return to the principle of separation of powers, balance and cooperation between these powers, and respect the independence of the judiciary.

4- Reassure the Lebanese that the presidency and the government adhere to the principles of the Taef Accord that is based on coexistence, respecting the constitution, preserving public and private freedoms, enabling the state to extend its full authority over all its land and facilities and control its imports, and restoring the criteria of competence, merit, and entitlement to occupy positions in state departments and institutions. As well as adopting accountability in the institutions on the basis of performance.

5-  Stop counterfeiting anti-corruption and turning it into a campaign of revenge and settling political scores, and start working to restore the confidence of the Lebanese and the world in the Lebanese administration through real, honest, impartial corruption-fighting, and by establishing the state of law that applies to everyone without any exception.

6- Stop the delay and procrastination in issuing the judicial appointments with unconvincing pretexts, and immediately release them as prepared by the Supreme Judicial Council, which removes suspicions about the intention to control the judiciary for political ends, and proves seriousness and sincerity in the approach of fighting corruption.

7- Realize the dangers of the isolation of Lebanon from its Arab and international surrounding, and accelerate the restoration of Lebanon’s Arab and international relations, by emphasizing on disassociating the Lebanese state and government, with all its components, from any regional or international conflicts or axes, to avoid more negative repercussions on the political, economic, financial and monetary levels, and to restore the confidence of the Lebanese citizens and the Arab and international communities.

We warn against the consequences of the pursuit by the Mandate and its government of the policies and practices that lead our country to a serious national crisis that turns difficulties into collapse, and suffering into an explosion. We call on them to return immediately to adopting the real and promised remedies that unite the Lebanese and do not separate them, within the framework of respecting the Taef Accord, the constitution and laws, and restore the confidence of citizens in their state, and the Arab and international confidence in Lebanon in order to preserve its interest and the interest of all Lebanese.

The protests have returned to the streets in the Lebanese cities and towns, despite the preventive measures from the Ministry of Health due to the dangers of the coronavirus pandemic. This means that after more than three months of patience, the aggravation of the crises and the spread of poverty, the citizens took to the streets to express their anger and disappointment and to demand reform, an end of the collapse and attention to the basic needs of the Lebanese. Of course, we do not accept the destruction of banks, shops, private and public properties. We do not accept the attacks against the army and security forces, and we pay tribute to them for their resilience and empathy towards the rightful demands of the Lebanese. But we request investigations about the violence, the deaths and the injuries that took place. And do not accept that the army and security forces be used as if they are the ones restricting the citizens' lives and freedoms.

We assure all the Lebanese, including our people in Tripoli, the North, Beirut, Sidon, the South, Bekaa and Mount Lebanon, that we will remain faithful to their issues and problems that are national problems that cannot be ignored, as the abuses caused by this Mandate and this government to the citizens, the Lebanese system and its constitution cannot be disregarded.”

Mikati from Baabda: Independent Center Bloc did not nominate anyone to head government

NNA - Former PM Najib Mikati announced, after meeting President of the Republic, General Michel Aoun, that his bloc, the Independent Center, did not name anyone as head of government.

Mikati said after the meeting: "Finally, the binding consultations, that we were calling for, took place and during the fifty-day period we noticed how things developed as each day of delay cost a great deal on the economy and social conditions of all Lebanese. In the Independent Central Bloc, which will soon participate in the consultations, we discussed this morning the issue of naming and set standards for the Prime Minister who is ready and who has expressed his willingness to take on this difficult task. And the criteria are the capabilities of this person, his attendance, and his representative capacity. Frankly, despite my personal respect for the two subjects, we did not find anyone with these specifications, and therefore we did not name anyone and veiled the designation".

Replying to a question Mikati said "With all my respect for people and my friendship with them, in this period we need an exceptional person with an exceptional team. I do not want to frustrate the hopes of the Lebanese, but I have doubts that none of the parties can take over at this stage".

"We are not talking about the Sunni or Christian cover, and I remind you that Prime Minister Hariri asked to delay consultations because the Lebanese forces and the Free Patriotic Movement refused to name him, and therefore this matter should be a message that we are not satisfied with the name that landed by parachute" Mikati stated.
Replying to another question the Former PM stated "It is the path of things which determines the name, and if the designation is all of one color, then it will be a Government of one color. As for the comparison between the conditions for forming my Government and the current conditions, it is not suitable, because the situation is much more difficult, and I remind you that I spoke about capabilities, attendance and representation. You must compare to know how the conditions are different".



Many challenges face the world today. Education, the economy, the technology revolution, poverty, terrorism, global energy issues… You’re entrusted with the task of facing up to these challenges. Identify and study them. Should you succeed, you’d have made of the world not only the mere source of buried energy, but one of untold energies of the human mind, working, creating, and producing.

30/6/2007 - Freedom is both your present and your future. Your Lebanese tradition and inheritance. Freedom gives you more commitment to fight for justice among people and harmony among nations.

30/6/2007 - Do your best, from within your future positions, to avoid that Lebanon becomes the grounds for the disputes of others- other countries and other factions. It’s high time we realize this can only bring us hardship and strife.

30/6/2007 - Today you exit to the real, pragmatic world, away from conceptual theories, ready for the bright future any young man or woman would aspire to. It's yours for the taking, so don't hesitate. Plunge in it with unremitting work, guided by your faith in the Almighty, and with your parents' blessings.
The sparkle in your eyes shows me your righteousness, however dark the injustice around you. I see in you the bridge for continuity and national welfare whatever the obstacles. So don't be put off by aggravations. Life is an ongoing lesson, never synonymous with failures, as long as your mistakes become examples and your perseverance, achievement.

30/6/2007 - Lebanon is the country of pluralism, with the rich diversity of religion, culture and thought. At the heart of all dreams, a tangible reality, the epicenter. The ambitious country worthy of sacrifice, worthy of your belonging to him, once you dispel extremism and fanaticism.

30/6/2007 - Education is a strong dream, our courage an incentive to turn this dream a reality. So let’s dream of a country united in its rich diversity, stable in solid productivity, prosperous with the entrepreneurial spirit and work opportunities and fair play. Let’s work towards this goal, solid of will and action.

30/6/2007 - Every day will bring to you whatever you put in it. And the world will become your stage when you recognize one another. You are steadfast, let this be the bridge to your success. Be active in the dialogue of civilizations. And guided by your faith, learn to accept one another. Show the entire world the unique identity of your peoples and your countries.

30/6/2007 - That you should dream is your prerogative. Because dreaming propels one to unlimited freedom, to hope, not despair.

2/11/2006 - Let’s accept and value one another’s diversity, nationally and internationally. We can accomplish more together than any of us can achieve on our own. 2/11/2006 - Lebanon has always been a hyphen – a “trait d’union” - between East and West; and the beacon for democracy and liberties in the Middle East. I am certain that Lebanon will regain its role of being the model of tolerance and the champion of civil liberties, human rights and freedom of speech.

2/11/2006 - Only under a “State of Law” will the Lebanese find a viable political environment and peace of mind. A system based on a truly modern representative state, overcoming diversity for the “common good”. We are a nation with great potential, rich with its human capital and backed by its well-established Diaspora.

2/11/2006 - Events are imposing tremendous pressure on the Lebanese political, economic and security structures. Some wonder how the nation survived through history and emerged as a truly living political entity. Well, I say Lebanon exists by the determination of the Lebanese people to overcome the difficulties inherent to their diversity. They are attached to the model of coexistence, to the dialogue between cultures, to the deep historical roots of the ancient land, to their entrepreneurial spirit and mostly, to their tolerance and “joie de vivre”.

1/5/2006 - It is not necessary to stress enough the importance of human resources. It is a basic prerequisite for continuing success in institutions and companies. We witness thousands of success stories of large to middle-scale businesses. One major reason of their success is the notion that the human element is the basis of their capital. It is what they call Human Capital.

1/5/2006 - Changing circumstances today demand even further excellence. In fact, they demand that achievements become all-encompassing, all the more so in today’s era of globalization and international agreements to free trade and services, and to establish both dual and multiple free-zone areas.

11/4/2006 - How then to best address the complexities of our unpredictable world? I would say with the tools of knowledge, of wisdom, and of talent. In one word: education.

11/4/2006 - All religions have goodness in them. And history tells us religious extremists were defeated by people who shunned the collision course, saw Good and rejected Evil. Good people who look towards a brotherhood of man. People who turn the other cheek, equal in their love of God, equal in their faith, and equal in forgiveness, people who celebrate what they have in common, rather than what divides them.

11/4/2006 - The late Pope Jean Paul the 2nd hailed Lebanon as more than a country, as a message of freedom, a symbol of pluralism, and for mutual understanding between East and West. We Lebanese are closely bound to one another, a patchwork of communities, as many as 18 and more. Our destiny, and choice, is to live together, united, respectful to one another, as well as tolerant.

11/4/2006 - Gone are the days when a conqueror would subordinate another and dictate his own way of life. Today’s one accepted subordination is to the voice of reason. And the only imposition we could admit, is that of the aristocracy of the mind, and the elegant thoughts it harbors.

11/4/2006 - When there is discord, we must find the wisdom to reach for the group that is isolated outside the national accord. Our prime objective is then to preserve life, to endorse the generosity of the heart, by showing tolerance, and solidarity, to lay down the foundations of a society united by the will of all its citizens to live together, freed from tensions, chaos, and tragedy.

12/2/2004 - The Lebanese human resources is rich, let us focus on giving the young generation an education to foster modern thinking. Let us focus on how to best invest in the human resources.

4/1/2003 - Globalization represents one of the very difficult challenges facing Civil Aviation and Air Transport. It does not necessarily call for the integration of all into one vision, but rather the necessity to harmonize and customize our efforts to complement the roles of each of us in providing humanity the equality of life they deserve.
We cannot divide what we do not own, and the airspace is one for all. It is our role to use it wisely and to cooperate together in lifting all man made obstacles confronting air transport.

9/11/2000 - Lebanon needs a new strategy to enter the 21st century which defines the path forward to economic growth and long-term sustainable prosperous economy.
A plan of decisive action is needed to focus on the imperative needs and immediate priorities of reconstruction, and not to forget the long-term vision of economic growth and competitiveness.

18/10/2000 - While we are closing on the second millennium and embarking on the third, the world is stepping into unbeaten paths of knowledge and technology.
The Lebanese Government, very much aware of that, is expending substantial efforts to catch up with a lag of long years of civil war and occupation of part of its territory that left the country far behind in all fields.

25/6/1999 - The government of Lebanon considers its relationship with the international organizations and donor agencies to be one of utmost strategic value, for the welfare and well-being of its citizens. Lebanon will continue to strive for stronger and ever more productive ties with the international organizations.

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