Lebanon's Grand Mufti Warns of Danger of Boycotting Parliamentary Elections

Derian leads Eid al-Fitr prayers in Downtown Beirut. (NNA)
Derian leads Eid al-Fitr prayers in Downtown Beirut. (NNA)
TT

Lebanon's Grand Mufti Warns of Danger of Boycotting Parliamentary Elections

Derian leads Eid al-Fitr prayers in Downtown Beirut. (NNA)
Derian leads Eid al-Fitr prayers in Downtown Beirut. (NNA)

Lebanon’s Grand Mufti Sheikh Abdel Latif Derian warned against the danger of boycotting the upcoming parliamentary elections, calling for a heavy turnout.

During his Eid al-Fitr sermon on Monday, Derian stressed the importance to seize “the opportunity to achieve change through the elections.”

The prayers were attended by Prime Minister Najib Mikati, former Prime Minister Fouad Siniora and a number of ambassadors, including Kuwaiti Ambassador Abdul-Al Al-Qenaei.

The Grand Mufti lashed out at those who “turned Lebanon into a failed state,” saying: “None of those useless ones has the courage to admit what their dirty hands committed in corruption and illicit dealings. They classify themselves as angels and saints in order to return to the crime scene again. Beware of their deceptive and misleading statements.”

He went on to say: “They try to make the abuser a well-doer and the criminal a hero, elevating the useless to the highest levels of praise and honor. They are the ones who transformed Lebanon into a failed state begging for water, electricity and bread.”

Derian stressed that the parliamentary elections “are an opportunity for us to change.”

“Let it be a change for the better,” he underlined.

He said that the Lebanese were “capable of rebuilding their country and restoring the collapsed state institutions, based on the selection of members of parliament, which is the gateway to the desired reform.”

The elections are scheduled for May 15.

Following the prayers, Mikati and Siniora visited the tomb of late Prime Minister Rafik Hariri in downtown Beirut.



US Military Pier Operations in Gaza Suspended after Piece Breaks Off

US Navy personnel construct a JLOTS, which stands for "Joint Logistics Over-the Shore" temporary pier which will provide a ship-to-shore distribution system to help deliver humanitarian aid into Gaza, in an undated handout picture in the Mediterranean Sea. (US Central Command/Handout via Reuters/File Photo)
US Navy personnel construct a JLOTS, which stands for "Joint Logistics Over-the Shore" temporary pier which will provide a ship-to-shore distribution system to help deliver humanitarian aid into Gaza, in an undated handout picture in the Mediterranean Sea. (US Central Command/Handout via Reuters/File Photo)
TT

US Military Pier Operations in Gaza Suspended after Piece Breaks Off

US Navy personnel construct a JLOTS, which stands for "Joint Logistics Over-the Shore" temporary pier which will provide a ship-to-shore distribution system to help deliver humanitarian aid into Gaza, in an undated handout picture in the Mediterranean Sea. (US Central Command/Handout via Reuters/File Photo)
US Navy personnel construct a JLOTS, which stands for "Joint Logistics Over-the Shore" temporary pier which will provide a ship-to-shore distribution system to help deliver humanitarian aid into Gaza, in an undated handout picture in the Mediterranean Sea. (US Central Command/Handout via Reuters/File Photo)

A part of the US military's pier off Gaza has broken off, rendering it temporarily inoperable, two US officials said, in the latest blow to efforts to deliver humanitarian aid to Palestinians.

The US officials, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said bad weather was believed to be the reason that the part had broken off. They did not say how big the part was or speculate on how long it would take for the pier to resume operations.

The pier was announced by US President Joe Biden in March and involved the military assembling the floating structure off the coast. Estimated to cost $320 million for the first 90 days and involve about 1,000 US service members, it went into operation two weeks ago.

Since the pier began operations, the United Nations has transported 137 trucks of aid from the pier - the equivalent of 900 metric tons - said a UN World Food Program (WFP) spokesperson.