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Lebanon: Bassil Publicizes Quartet Alliance to Break His Isolation

Lebanon: Bassil Publicizes Quartet Alliance to Break His Isolation

Thursday, 22 October, 2020 - 08:45
Then-Lebanese Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil attends a meeting with Italian counterpart Angelino Alfano in Rome, Italy, November 15, 2017. REUTERS/Remo Casilli

The Free Patriotic Movement (FPM) has not ceased to incite the Christian street against what the OTV channel called the quartet alliance, composed of the Shiite duo, the Future Movement, and the Progressive Socialist Party (PSP).

Sources close to the alleged Quartet say that the country can no longer tolerate being drawn into sectarian divisions. They stress that no party has an interest in dragging the country into a new cycle of sectarian problems.

“What is the point of taking the country back to square one and depicting the current conflict as a rift between Muslims and Christians… similar to what happened on October 13, 1990, when the army commander, General Michel Aoun, was deported from the Presidential Palace in Baabda?” The sources asked.

They also questioned the fate of the 2006 alliance between the FPM and Hezbollah, known as the Mar Mikhael agreement, with MP Gebran Bassil’s insistence on publicizing the so-called quartet alliance, saying: “Has the head of the FPM, MP Gebran Bassil, decided to unilaterally overthrow the understanding in order to pass a message to the United States in order to regain his chances of running for the presidential elections?”

The sources emphasized that Bassil was being subjected to an international and internal blockade and was trying to throw the accusation at his opponents, adding that he did not spare his ally, Hezbollah, which he accused of being part of the quartet alliance.

On the other hand, other political sources confirmed that Bassil was now in a state of political isolation, almost besieged from every direction. They added that the head of the FPM was betting on Aoun’s support to return to the forefront, within the process of the government formation.

According to the sources, the FPM also tried to persuade Maronite Patriarch Beshara Al-Rai to host a meeting of Maronite leaders, but the Lebanese Forces and Kataeb party linked their acceptance to Bassil’s official support to the Patriarch’s call for Lebanon’s neutrality before any agreement between the Christian factions.

Accordingly, the FPM’s insistence on publicizing the establishment of a quadripartite alliance between the Islamic forces turned negatively against him - as Christian sources said – and failed to open a window that would allow him to get out of the political siege imposed on him.

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