World Video | Defence | Foreign Affairs | Natural Events | Trade | NZ in World News | NZ National News Video | NZ Regional News | Search


Lebanese Parliament Holds Extraordinary Session

Lebanese Parliament Holds Extraordinary Session on Hariri's Assassination

Against the backdrop of heightened political tension between loyalists and the opposition in Lebanon, the parliament started today a stormy general session over the assassination of former prime minister Rafiq Hariri. The opposition was expected to submit a censure motion against the government.

MPs observed a one-minute silence in memory of Hariri and then they chanted the national anthem.

Speaker Nabih Berri opened the session and announced the names of the MPs who failed to attend the session namely George Frem, Issam Fares, Kabalan Issam el Khouri and Qaysar Moawad.

Berri stressed that the parliament presents a prosecution against the plotters and perpetrators of the assassination crime of Hariri as well as the attempts on Druze MP Marwan Hmedeh's life and the assassination of minister Elie Hobeika. Berri called on all parties not to make unfounded accusations which risk dividing the Lebanese people and undermining Lebanon's relations with its neighbors.

The speaker also stressed that the secrecy of the investigation must not be targeted and that no tardiness is accepted and that the investigation must not end with predictions.

The second to talk was Premier Omar Karami whose statement touched on the assassination of Hariri and the procedures his government took to face the repercussions of the crime as well as the Taif accord and the relation with Syria. According to Karami, the hand that killed Hariri hit all of Lebanon and led to a dangerous setback and warned against sedition.

The government of Karami insisted on continuing the investigation in an accelerated manner. Other positions taken by the government were related to the political life that according to Karami must go on simultaneously with the investigation.

The prime minister expressed the government's determination to hold elections on schedule. He also renewed his call for a national dialogue to confront the repercussions of the crime to spare the country further dangers and not to be dragged to the outside. In the end of his speech, Karami asked for the confidence of the parliament.

While Karami was speaking, he was interrupted by Opposition MP Walid Ido who was then asked to end his interruption by the speaker. Afterwards, opposition MP Bassem al Sabe'h stood up and describe Karami's speech as a black document. An argument ensued before Speaker Nabih Berri managed to calm things down. The first MP to take the stand to talk was Martyr Hariri's sister Bahiyah.

MP Hariri implied calling for an international committee to investigate the assassination of Martyr Hariri does not diminish the sovereignty of Lebanon. Hariri reiterated that Lebanon will work on implementing the Taif accord as a whole. She also called for the adherence of the Lebanese to unity and not to throw away their rights. She also addressed Arabs and called on them not to lose faith in Lebanon adding that the safety of the Arab world is from the safety of Lebanon.

MP Bahiyah Hariri finally called to topple the government. Following Hariri were MPs Mikhael Daher, Robert Ghanem and Marwan Hmedeh. Hmedeh criticized the government, security bodies and what he called the imposed extension of President Emile Lahoud's term. There are more than 40 MPs who registered their names to have a say in the session, and then the government will have to respond to the MPs questions. This process could take several hours and maybe days before a vote is taken to give the government confidence or topple it.

© Scoop Media

World Headlines


Gordon Campbell: Is This Guy The World’s Most Dangerous Thirtysomething?

Saudi Arabia has long been regarded as a pillar of stability in the Middle East, and is the essential caterer to the West’s fossil fuel needs. It is also the country that gave us Osama Bin Laden, al Qaeda, and 15 of the 19 terrorists who carried out the 9/11 attacks... More>>


Non-Binding Postal Vote: Australia Says Yes To Same Sex Marriage

Binoy Kampmark: Out of 150 federal seats, 133 registered affirmative totals in returning their response to the question “Should the law be changed to allow same-sex couples to marry?”. More>>


Bonn Climate Change Conference: Protecting Health In Small Island States

The vision is that, by 2030, all Small Island Developing States will have health systems that are resilient to climate change and countries around the world will be reducing their carbon emissions both to protect the most vulnerable from climate risks and deliver large health benefits in carbon-emitting countries. More>>


Camp Shut Down: Refugees Must Be Rescued From Manus

On 31st October 2017, the detention centre on Manus Island in which the Australian Government has been holding more than 700 refugees was closed, leaving those living there in a desperate situation. More>>



Rohingya Muslims Massacred: Restrictions On Aid Put 1000s At Risk

Amnesty: The Myanmar authorities’ restrictions on international aid in Rakhine state is putting tens of thousands of lives at risk in a region where mainly Rohingya people are already suffering horrific abuses from a disproportionate military campaign. More>>


  • Pacific.Scoop
  • Cafe Pacific
  • PMC