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Al-Qaeda Present, Hizbullah in Bkirki, Southern Suburb Applies Law

Al-Qaeda Present, Hizbullah in Bkirki, Southern Suburb Applies Law
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Zeinab Essa

New Year's Holiday ended. And life's spirit is returning back to the political scene as 2012 new years' sun rose carrying with its hopes with better days and moments.

With the beginning of 2012, it seems that the Arab nation is still suffering from fragmentation and moving towards the unknown as Western eyes are fixed on both the strong Iran and resisting Syria.

In Lebanon, the political scene seems a continuous series of the last year's picture.

As "March 14" losing bets are still targeting Syria, the suffering team directed its campaign against Lebanese defense ministry who had revealed some lines of the conspiracy: al-Qaeda members are infiltrating the borders from Lebanon to Syria.

Al-Qaeda Present: Suleiman, Mikati to Move

In response, "Marada" movement Leader MP Suleiman Franjieh held a press conference Monday to stress Ghosn's accurate information.

Clarifying that both President Michel Suleiman as well as Prime Minister Najib Mikati had reports about al-Qaeda activity in Lebanon, Franjieh hoped that "the president is working for the country's best interests and he hoped that Suleiman will solve the problem behind the scenes and not through the media."

"It is true that al-Qaeda is present in Lebanon and it is true that there is terrorism in Lebanon," Franjieh told reporters at his residence in Bneshaai, north Lebanon.

He also unveiled that Ghosn's remarks on the presence of a-Qaeda in Lebanon were based on security, military and intelligence reports by the Army calling on "Ghosn and Army commander General Jean Qahwagi to reveal the information they have on the alleged presence of Al-Qaeda members in Lebanon."

Gov't Session: Oil, Wages

At another Lebanese concern, the Lebanese government is scheduled to meet Wednesday and on the top of concern is the "oil wealth" decree.

Lebanese Energy Minister Gebran Bassil announced Tuesday that "he expects the government to pass the decrees implementing the oil exploration bill during its Wednesday session."

In remarks to "as-Safir" newspaper, Bassil stressed "I cannot find a justification for delaying the issue and I expect that the decrees are to be approved during the session."

Noting that "the oil projects are only the beginning," he highlighted that "what is required is the quick formation of the committee to oversee the oil exploration and drilling off Lebanon's coast and grant licenses in the first quarter of this year [to be able to carry out the projects."

For his part, House Speaker Nabih Berri viewed that the "government's approval of
 decrees implementing the oil exploration bill that was ratified in parliament in 2010 is to be a great ministerial achievement with the beginning of the New Year."

"Such projects will be an honor for Premier Mikati, whose government will witness the success of projects that were not achieved by past governments," Berri asserted in an interview with "an-Nahar" daily.

The House Speaker also uncovered that the "white oil project is to be realized in the "Litani" River project after signing the contract and implementation will start soon."

"These two projects are to be written with golden letters in the book of Mikati's government," Berri added.

In parallel, PM's circles denied to "as-Safir" rumors about the existence of differences between the governmental parties.

"As-Safir" confirmed that ""Mikati's" close sources denies what has been leaked on emerge of major differences within the government, especially between him and the "Change and Reform Bloc" on several issues, including appointments."

The Premier's sources emphasized "the cohesion of the government in its approach to all issues, despite some differences on the best solutions for all issues."

In parallel, Head of "Change and Reform bloc" MP Michel Aoun released a statement criticizing media false leaks that he doesn't support the wages decree proposed by Labor minister Charbel Nahhas
"Aoun's stances are clear and do not need to be interpreted," the statement said.

This comes as the Shura council is supposed to issue its decision concerning wages' decree after meeting Nahhas.

Hizbullah in Bkirki

At another level, lights were shed Tuesday on Hizbullah delegation's visit to Maronite Patriarch Bshara al-Rai.

"The regional situation, to which we are part of, is very harsh and complicated," said Sheikh Mohammad Amro, head of the Hizbullah's delegation.
We fear the conflict will spread to Lebanon. But with your wisdom and the wisdom of the leaders of Lebanon ... we hope that political leaders will stay away from interfering in others' affairs because Lebanon cannot afford any political, military or security shake-ups," Sheikh Amro added.

Rai, for his part, criticized the West for separating God from the state, stressing that Lebanon, a country of coexistence, detaches the state from religion, but not the state from God.

"We are able to live in diversity and build a civil state and this is our message to the East and West," he added.

Charbel: Harming "Dahiyeh" to Be Punished

Regarding the Southern Suburb's of Beirut situation, "as-Safir" reported that "the region is witnessing progressive steps regarding the official security presence and activation of the Internal Security Forces activity at various levels relative to the maintenance of public order, in addition to the role of the Lebanese army in cases that require direct intervention."

In this context, Interior Minister Marwan Charbel stressed that "accusing the residents of southern Beirut suburbs "Dahiyeh" of making violations is very wrong."
"90 percent of the residents of "Dahiyeh" are good people," Charbel added.
In an interview with "as-Safir", the Interior minister vowed that "any thug that can harm the environment that fosters the Resistance will pay the price."

Source: Lebanese newspapers, Translated and Edited by