Asharq Al-awsat English Middle-east and International News and Opinion from Asharq Al-awsat Newspaper

Lebanon: National Initiative to Face Iran’s Influence

Lebanon: National Initiative to Face Iran’s Influence

Wednesday, 1 November, 2017 - 09:15
Lebanon's Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah addresses his supporters via a screen during a rally marking Al-Quds day in Beirut's southern suburbs, Lebanon June 23, 2017. REUTERS/Aziz Taher

Lebanese politicians and religious men, as well as cultural, media and social figures are seeking to launch a new political movement to “protect the state and the constitution, end the imbalance of power in favor of Hezbollah and confront the Iranian hegemony over Lebanon.”

The initiative is based on the assumption that the political arrangements that Lebanon witnessed during the past year, starting with the election of a president and the formation of a government, “have enabled Iran to control the Lebanese decision and increased the fears of sliding towards normalization of relations with the Syrian regime.”

Launched by prominent Lebanese intellectual Dr. Radwan al-Sayyed and former coordinator of the March 14 Forces General Secretariat, former MP Fares Soueid, the initiative will seek to “liberate Lebanon from Iran’s influence and to return it to Arab legitimacy, since the task of lifting the Iranian guardianship over Lebanon is a shared national responsibility.”

In comments to Asharq al-Awsat newspaper, Sayyed said: “The movement consists of a group of independents from all sects, some of whom were in political movements and are no longer part of those movements.”

He pointed out that more than 20 development and service groups have joined the initiative, and formed a coordination committee to unite the vision and develop the program of work for the coming phase.

“The National Initiative Movement is based on four principles: First, the maintenance of Taif and the Constitution, the second is the fight against illegal weapons and the extension of the state’s authority over all the Lebanese territories; the third is the consolidation of the Lebanese legitimacy, while the fourth principle is rebuilding the state and adopting internal policies that are free of corruption,” Sayyed said.

Soueid, for his part, emphasized that the movement was aimed at prioritizing the national will, saying: “There are those in Lebanon who are proud of providing stability by surrendering to Hezbollah’s conditions and military strength, but they must realize that the balance of power is unstable.”

The preparatory committee of the National Initiative Movement is preparing its draft document, which will be discussed at a meeting on November 26, focusing on the need to extend the sovereignty of the state on the entire Lebanese territories in accordance with the Taif Agreement and international legitimacy resolutions.

Editor Picks