Border demarcation more important than ties, Lebanese lawmaker says
The establishment of diplomatic ties between Syria and
Lebanon was a "major accomplishment for the March 14 forces and the Cedar
Revolution, a Lebanese lawmaker said Sunday.
Ahmed Fatfat from the ruling majority noted however that it was "a first step" and other steps needed to be taken, dpa reported.
"Most important would be demarcating the joint borders and halting Syria's intervention in Lebanon's affairs," he said.
Anti-Syrian forces in Lebanon held a massive rally in Beirut on March 14, 2005, shortly before Syria agreed to pull its forces out of Lebanon, after a military presence in the country lasting 30 years.
Syria has never established diplomatic ties with its smaller neighbour, but French President Nicolas Sarkozy, hosting a summit of Mediterranean states in France, announced that Syrian President Bashar Assad has agreed to the opening of embassies in Damascus and Beirut.
Establishing diplomatic ties with Damascus and demarcating the joint borders between Lebanon and Syria have topped demands by the March 14 majority alliance since the 2005 assassination of ex-Premier Rafik Hariri, an act for which Syria has been blamed.
"What is important though," Fatfat said, "is setting up relations between two states, not between a state and a subject."
He said Syria should "respect Lebanon's special character and its freedom of expression."
Meanwhile, Samir Franjieh, another legislator from the anti-Syrian ruling majority described Assad's declared intention to set up diplomatic ties with Lebanon is an "exceptionally important indication."
He said Lebanon was heading towards major changes, including "the topic of arms and placing them outside the frame of the internal balance (of power)."