Lebanon president urges agreement on defense strategy

Photo: Lebanon president urges agreement on defense strategy / Arab World

Lebanese President Michel Suleiman on Wednesday emphasized the need to continue discussions on a National Defense Strategy, deeming it a must for all Lebanese people, Xinhua reported.

"We can't build a state without having a Defense Strategy to protect everyone, including the resistance," Suleiman said in reference to Hezbollah.

On Monday the National Dialogue Committee held a meeting with the absence of most of the March 8 camp, the Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea and Hezbollah representatives.

The committee stressed on the importance of agreeing on a National Defense Strategy over the Israeli threats, the terrorism dangers and the spread of illegal weapons in the country.

With his presidential term ending on May 25, Suleiman said "the new president should be strong and should not belong to a certain political camp and be fully loyal to Lebanon."

He added "the new president should seek to carry out the decisions reached at the national dialogue including the Baabda Declaration," which calls for distancing Lebanon from the regional turmoil, particularly the Syrian one.

Suleiman reaffirmed that "decentralization boosts national unity and diversity, avoids disrupting work at state insinuations, allows youth to participate in governance and creates an incentive for good performance."

The president lauded the armed forces' security plans in the northern city of Tripoli and the areas bordering Syria in the Bekaa Valley, saying it's "successful in thwarting terrorist activities."

Last week the Lebanese cabinet tasked the Lebanese army and Internal Security Forces of implementing a security plan to restore calm in Tripoli. Various rounds of violence have left scores dead there.

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