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Hariri: It's Unacceptable that Arms Become Means to Influence Political Life in the Country
Prime Minister Saad Hariri stressed that from now on he will 'talk frankly and openly about all matters, because it is not in the national interest to return to the policy of smoothing the edges, and we shouldn't bury our heads in the sand when the arms become a means to put pressure on the political life in the country”. He said: 'What concerns us and remains our priority is not to have any weapons of any party as a means to crack down on civil peace and on the democratic system.”

PM Hariri's words came during a meeting Thursday evening at the 'Center House” with the coordination councils of Beirut at the Future Movement.

Hariri welcomed the attendees and said: 'I am keen to meet and communicate constantly with you to inform you of the political situation, and so that I can be aware of your concerns. We were unable to meet after the parliamentary elections due to our occupation with the concerns of the Premiership, but this doesn't mean that I forgot you or forgot the people who worked with me day and night to keep the residence of Martyr Prime Minister Rafik Hariri in Koraytem open. This house and that in Koraytem are your homes and I promise you to have continuous communication with you and you will only hear frank speech from me.”

He added: 'We went through a blurry stage, but I didn't change and we kept working with good faith for Lebanon's interest. But unfortunately, although negotiations from our side were honest, others used deception, and when we face them with clear positions such as those we expressed last Monday, they accuse us of treason. We are not weak; we are strong as a result of our solidarity and our belief in our cause. It is not only the cause of Rafik Hariri but all what he did, and we want this to continue: Rafik Hariri the school, the modernism, the development and true Arabism; Rafik Hariri who represents the splendor, dignity and pride. Martyr Prime Minister used to tolerate things in order to preserve the country's interests, and this is what we tried to do despite the fact that the other party was not keen on the national unity as we were”.

PM Hariri talked about his position which he explained in the February 14 ceremony about the 'S-S” initiative, and said: 'We heard a lot about the so-called 'S-S”, but the truth is that it was a national reconciliation where the Lebanese meet in the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia under the auspices of King Abdullah bin-Abdul Aziz for reconciliation and forgiveness, not only the 2005-2011 period but since the Taef Accord. I used to wonder why these negotiations are not succeeding although all issues are clear and the others have to execute what was agreed. I thought that the Palestinian weapons outside the camps or the security outposts or other issues were hindering the solution. Can you imagine the importance of such a reconciliation under the auspices of King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz and in the presence of a number of heads of states? And can you imagine the role of those who are working today to disperse people and create disputes between political groups? Achieving such a reconciliation which we sought, was supposed to end the role of these people. Thus, we tackled the issue of negotiations in a very honest way because we wanted to achieve this reconciliation.”

PM Hariri talked about the weapons issue and said: 'At one point, I was very anxious to put this issue on the dialogue table, and I was smoothing th edges. But today, I consider that returning to the policy of smoothing the edges is not in the national interest. There is a problem in the country that should be dealt with very frankly and honestly and we should not bury our heads in the sand, especially when this weapon becomes a means to put pressure on the political life in the country. This is unacceptable, because we cannot build a country in this way. The country has one army, one authority and one state which should gather all its citizens around it. And after all the bitter experiences undergone by Lebanon, it is wrong for some to classify this as an attempt to circumvent the arms of the resistance, because the truth is very different, and what concerns us and remains our priority is not to have any weapons of any party as a means to crack down on civil peace and on the democratic system”.

On his relationship with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, PM Hariri said: "We are from the school of loyalty, which was founded by martyr Prime Minister Rafik Hariri. And the first pillar of this loyalty is for us to extend our thanks and gratitude to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah bin Abdul Aziz and the Saudi people, who did not lag in the most difficult conditions from assisting Lebanon and making every effort necessary to establish security and stability. And history, from independence to the Taif Accord and today, attests to this track which records that the kingdom only provided Lebanon with good things. There are parties that do not want the relationship with the Kingdom to remain as the Lebanese people have known it over many years, and I assure everyone that the relationship with the Kingdom is stronger than to allow any winds to attack its roots".

He continued: "We and our allies in 'March 14” agree on the same line, which is that we will gather on March 14, 2011 as we did on March 14, 2005. This is a decisive day in the history of Lebanon and we want it to be an asset in Lebanon's democratic and national life. My speech on February 14 was clear and explicit, and the truth is that I wanted our move to take place on March 14 and not on February 14, in order to relive the moment in all its clarity, and say that we in this country, Muslims and Christians, want the state, the Constitution, the institutions, the Special Tribunal for Lebanon and the truth. We do not want to be told that the tribunal is Israeli; this tribunal is neither Israeli nor American. People should know the truth, and know who assassinated not just Rafik Hariri but the whole convoy of martyrs throughout six years”."
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