DAILY SCOPE: ’You Stink’ and ’August 29th Movement Follow-up Committee’ in disagreement
Authorities Must Answer Demands Before Too Late
Al-Mashnouq Announces Banning Occupation of Ministries...Rabieh Accuses Feltman of Working to Keep Aoun from Presidency
Disagreements Plague Popular Movement
Al-Mashnouq Threatens to Protect Institutions with Force...Al-Hariri Replies in Defense of Qatar
Al-Mashnouq to An-Nahar: Someone Pushing Towards Blood
Newspapers on Thursday, September 3rd, 2015, focused on domestic issues yet again, as news of the movement that held rallies in downtown Beirut covers headlines yet again. The newspapers today focused on news of disagreement among the movement's different components, preventing them from uniting under one banner, and hints from Interior Minister Nouhad al-Mashnouq, that an Arab State stands behind the "chaos" and "disturbance" taking place in downtown Beirut.
Authorities Must Answer Demands Before Too Late - AS-SAFIR
As-Safir Newspaper on Thursday discussed the pause in the demonstrations, calling it a "warrior's rest", and saying that the question shouldn't be about the protests' timing, but rather why the movement took so long in the first place.
For over a year now, Lebanon has been without a president, while its parliament extended its term twice now since June 2013, not to mention the electricity, water, and garbage crises.
That is why, according to As-Safir, though the movement's slogans and its proceedings are up for debate, its motives are not, as they stem from people's suffering.
Regardless of the many core arguments regarding the street rallies, it can be said that this movement was successful in creating new facts from its onset:
- Change the internal work schedule, which mainly dealt with classical and overused matters, suddenly placing peoples' cares and priorities at the forefront.
- Breaking psychological barriers and political taboos that had for long confined citizens.
- Confuse the political class, which struggled to deal with the demonstrations from the onset. Some tried to hop on board, and then got off, while others applauded the demands but stood against their implementation, and others yet threw accusations and blamed others for how things have become.
- The beginning of a change in the balance of power controlling the internal rules of the game.
Demonstrations have been ongoing in Lebanon since August 22nd, after a combination of electricity, water, and especially trash crises plagued Lebanon. The "You Stink" online group, along with a few other groups, has been holding protests against the trash crisis that erupted when the Naameh landfill south of Beirut was closed on July 17. Since the closure of the landfill, arbitrary garbage dumps began to emerge after various municipalities refused to allow the disposal of waste from Beirut and Mount Lebanon in their areas.
Disagreements Plague Popular Movement --- AL-AKHBAR
Al-Akhbar daily focused on domestic developments, saying that "the groups participating in the movement are drowning in their disagreements because of the ‘You Stink' group insisting on leading the popular movement and keeping the roof of their demands low, restricting it to the garbage crisis and conducting elections however possible. There are serious fears for the movement from irresponsible stances.
Two days ago, most of the groups participating in last Saturday's rally announced the formation of the "August 29th Movement Follow-up Committee". The committee's first decision was to invite people to go to the environment ministry in a show of support for the "You Stink" group, who had barged into the ministry building without prior coordination with other groups.
The dispute between "You Stink" and the other groups and activists pits the movement at a fork in the road: one leads the movement into clarity through a political work program, and the other expressed clearly by "You Stink", which wishes for the group to remain one based on the trash crisis, voiding the movement of any true political content, which others consider would facilitate its employment in different directions by wanting powers.
Al-Mashnouq to An-Nahar: Someone Is Pushing for Blood --- An-Nahar
An-Nahar published an interview with Interior Minister Nouhad al-Mashnouq, through which he warned that "someone wants to push Lebanon toward blood". He stated, in a press conference he held yesterday, that any occupation or attack on a public institution will be dealt with from the beginning, and lawfully, even by force if the occupiers or demonstrators do not answer." On the other hand, al-Mashnouq admitted that there was an excessive use of force on part of the ISF.
The "We Want Accountability" group organized a quiet gathering in the afternoon in reply to al-Mashnouq, accusing him of "distorting the facts", also discussing an upcoming emergency Security Council session for Lebanon to be "suspect, unacceptable, and considered to be blatant interference in internal Lebanese Affairs".
Source: News Agencies, Edited by website team