Important Message from Michel Aoun: We invite you to join us in Martyrs Square

After the weekly meeting of the Change and Reform Bloc held on Tuesday, General Aoun discussed the current political crisis in the country and directed his speech to all the Lebanese.

This is a translation of the speech made by General Aoun.
“Today I would like to talk to all the Lebanese People, Political groups, Sects; all segments of Lebanese society including associations and especially the protestors.

The demands they are making (the protestors) we have been advocating for many years.

You want electricity- you are right. You want water – you are right. You want clean streets – you are right. You want to see the end of corruption and the corrupt – you are right. You have many demands and you are right (in demanding them).

We’re not going to ask today, why you didn’t support us (in the past). When they disrupted the electricity plan, and when they disrupted our plans for dams, gas and oil, nor when we demanded a special court for financial crimes (corruption). Nor when we released the book Abra Al Mustahil (impossible innocence) which is full of disclosures (of corruption).

Nor when we released the file on waste and theft in the telecommunications ministry, which we announced was close to $1 billion. Nor when we demanded a fair distribution of funds for local councils, nor when we requested that the people be allowed to choose their President.

This is not important, what is important is that you have woken up. The youth that are protesting today – we are with them. And for sure they are protesting with a peaceful intent.

However, the big question mark is in regards to those that are stirring this movement, and this question mark is not coming from nothing, it has many reasons (question mark on those behind protests).

There is a big question mark when those who composed the electricity plan and those who disrupted it are stained with the same brush; when those who put forward plans for water, gas and oil are paralleled with those whose entire project was to disrupt these projects. When they put in the same basket those who presented a plan for a Pension scheme, and those who put the file to sleep.

There is a big question mark when they put in the same basket those who refused the extension of the term of parliament and lodged a case with the Constitutional court, and those who pressured the Constitutional court and passed the extension.

And when they put in the same basket, those who refused the Sukleen contract and its “black” funding, and demanded the termination of its contract, and those who proudly signed the contract for Sukleen.

Between those that obtained the rights of the local councils and those who refused to pay (dues).
For sure, here, there will be a big question mark. Because this claim is not just to rally action, this claim is not at all innocent, nor based on a lack of awareness.

Its aim (the claim that all are corrupt) is much more than simply covering for the corrupt. Its aim is to create a lack of confidence in all people, and all the institutions in preparation for chaos.

This is the creative chaos that they told us about. This is the creative chaos whose ugly images we saw in all the nations it passed through.
My dear youth, I am concerned by the Arab Spring, yes I fear from the effect of the Arab Spring on Lebanon. This spring, that in reality was the hell of Arabs. Entire peoples were folded into its fire, and we saw images that we could have never imagined we would see in this age.

And what has scared me even more is the message of CNN that Lebanon is now at the doors of this spring. What images could possible inspire us from the hellish spring; those from Egypt, Tunis, Libya, Syria or Iraq?

You may be disturbed by the smell of garbage, but the images of freely wasted blood are a heavy burden for all the people, and a cut that won’t heal.
Chaos is not a solution. Don’t for moment believe that there such a thing as creative chaos, a chaos from which comes advancement. All chaos is destruction, and no one gets away from it.

You want a solution? Then call for elections. Only elections can change the political groups that you are unhappy with. Vote for the MP’s that represent you. Demand an electoral law that delivers your voice and respects your will, then you will be able to vote as per your will.
Demand that you vote for the President of your country, you the people and no one should be able to fake your will.

Elections are the solution, not the demolition of the institutions (of the country), nor the creation of mistrust between people, leaving the institutions void and in disarray.

Do you want to change the political class? Demand an election law that represents your will. Do you want a President that represents you? Then demand that it is you who votes for him. Do you want institutions that are clean, then help bring clean people to these institutions. Only elections can cleanse the institutions with which you are not happy.

We invite you to partner with us in the demand for reform and join us on Friday at 5.30pm in Martyrs Square, so that we can differentiate between those of good intent and those of bad intent. “

In answering the question of a reporter, Gen Aoun confirmed that the Free Patriotic Movement would be participating in the round of dialogue recently called for by Speaker Nabih Berri, stating that the FPM would be presenting the legal and constitutional ways to solutions to the political problems Lebanon is encouraging.

When asked about foreign plans for the election of a new President, General Aoun said that there were no external solutions for the problem rather that the solution lay in direct elections. “An installed President from outside Lebanon will have boundaries imposed by foreign powers and will not work in the interests of the Lebanese people”.

Robert Bekhazi 02/09/15

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