Sayyed Nasrallah: Lebanon Has the Right to Drill in Its Territorial Water, We Seek A Strong State
By Al-Ahed news
Hezbollah Secretary General His Eminence Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah delivered a speech in Beirut’s southern suburb [Dahiyeh] ahead of May 15th parliamentary elections.
Welcoming the audience in the Dahiyeh’s electoral festival and thanking them for their massive participation, Sayyed Nasrallah underlined that “The massive contribution in Today’s [Tuesday] festival, and the one we witnessed yesterday in South Lebanon, and that we expect in Beqaa is the biggest message to those betting on the overturning of the people of resistance.”
“Neither there is Arabism without Palestine and al-Quds nor with normalizing ties with the ‘Israeli’ entity,” His Eminence confirmed.
Hailing the vote of the Lebanese expatriates, Sayyed Nasrallah stressed that “Voting for the lists of resistance express expatriates’ bravery and loyalty.”
“In the past days and after al-Quds Day’s speech and the mobilization of the resistance in Lebanon. I have received a message via a diplomatic channel that the ‘Israelis’ do not want a war with Lebanon, but we do not trust the enemy nor its premier, and we will maintain the state of alert that we declared on Quds Day,” he announced.
The Resistance’s leader further announced that “Our mobilization and preparedness will remain as they are until the end of the ‘Israeli’ maneuvers, and the situation is the same for the Palestinian resistance groups,” noting that “All what have been voiced by Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri conveys the thoughts of the national duo.”
On the internal front, Sayyed Nasrallah confirmed that “The presence of the state is important and essential since the alternative isn’t but chaos.”
“Hezbollah doesn’t present itself as a state within the state, and nobody can replace the state on all levels; even in the issue of resistance, it doesn’t propose itself as a replacement for the state, it's why we always talk about the Army, people and the Resistance,” he emphasized.
Warning that “Lebanon’s situation is very precise and sensitive and tackling its issues couldn’t happen through enthusiasm and revolutions like other countries,” His Eminence underlined that “The civil war is a redline which the Lebanese people must view as a treason.”
On this level, he recalled that “During the previous period, many tried to bring about dramatic changes, and the country was heading towards a civil war,” noting that “Through lies, accusations and siege, some bet over the past years that the resistance’s environment would turn against it.”
As he reiterated that Hezbollah doesn’t present itself as an alternative to the state, even in the issue of resistance, Sayyed Nasrallah declared that “What we seek is a fair, strong and capable state. This is what we announced in our 2009 political document. The state’s wealth belongs to all of the people and they have the right to access this wealth through fair and developmental projects.”
He also mentioned that “We neither did nor will ask the state to protect the resistance, rather we demand that nobody within the state stab the resistance’s back.”
“The Parliament is the mother of institutions that results from elections. This means that the electoral law is the key. The majority law was biased, while the proportional law is the most equitable one,” he stated, pointing out that “A fair state is that presents an electoral law whose citizens feel that they are able to be represented in the parliament.”
According to His Eminence, “There is great injustice when things are related to the voting age. The youth under 21 works and pays taxes, and the struggle must concentrate on giving the 18-year-olds the right to vote.”
Meanwhile, he detailed the aspects of the aspired strong state: “A strong state is one that can protect its sovereignty from any aggression. A fair state is one that practices balanced development among all regions, because state funds are for people and must reach them through development projects. The state should take care of citizens who are unable to work, including the elderly, orphans and those with incurable diseases. The fair and capable state is the one that is able to protect its sovereignty in land and water. It’s a state with an army capable of defending the land and does not place the burdens of liberation and protection on its people. A fair and capable state is the one that provides security to its citizens so that they feel that they are safe and away from any regional discrimination.”
Hoping that “A day comes when we have a strong state and a strong army that assumes the responsibility of defense,” Sayyed Nasrallah lamented the fact that “The Lebanese naval force can’t reach a depth of 300 or 400 meters to rescue the drowned victims in the ‘death boat’ in Tripoli.”
“We have been and will always be against taxes on the poor and the tax system must be progressive,” he highlighted, pointing out that “Given the sectarian Lebanese system, any talk of majorities and minorities is not realistic.”
In parallel, the Resistance Leader clearly stated: “If I say that Hezbollah alone is capable of building a fair and capable state, I won’t be honest. No one can do that alone in Lebanon. Rather, this needs cooperation between parties and movement, as we are in a country based on partnership.”
“Our country is built on partnership and non-elimination. Everyone must be represented in parliament according to their natural sizes, and the majoritarian electoral law did not do that but rather the proportional representation law,” he explained, warning that “Elimination and exclusion under the slogans of majority and minority would plunge Lebanon into adventures. I stress that we are with national partnership in order to pull Lebanon out of its crises.”
In addition, Sayyed Nasrallah declared that “Hezbollah feels that it is more responsible than before. From 1992 until 2005 we weren’t represented in the government because of our opposition to the policies that led to the current economic situation in Lebanon. We entered into the government because of the tense atmosphere in the country and in order to protect the resistance’s back from the political party that was allied with George Bush seeking a ‘New Middle East’.”
Once again, Hezbollah Secretary General clarified that “Lebanon can’t handle a leading sect nor a leading party, no matter how much this party may enjoy strength and popular support.”
“We insist on being present in any government, regardless of its nature, structure and program, in order to protect the resistance’s back. Now we insist to be present in the state with efficiency, seriousness, and responsibility,” he declared, noting that “The economic, living and financial situation needs a recovery plan that must be discussed honestly and seriously, without turning Lebanon into a dependent country. Hezbollah will seriously discuss this issue in the Parliament.”
However, His Eminence hinted that “The electoral and political alliances don’t mean that there are no differences between the allied parties and political groups.”
Urging the state to head towards both the east and the west, Sayyed Nasrallah viewed that “The government’s decision not to open the doors to companies from the east because of the US, means that we’ll achieve no progress.”
“We have treasure in the Lebanese water while the Lebanese people suffer from unemployment, hiking of prices, and starvation; why don’t we extract our treasure? Do we fear the Americans? If Lebanon goes to find its treasure, it will receive tens of billions of dollars. What can they do more than what they did in terms of sanctions, money smuggling, etc.?” he asked.
Meanwhile, His Eminence raised some points regarding the Lebanese maritime wealth: “Why doesn't ‘Israel’ wait for the demarcation of the borders and explore the disputed regions? Why doesn’t Lebanon work within its waters and borders? I say that Lebanon has the right to drill as it believes that it is its territorial waters. Had the ‘Israeli’ enemy been able to prevent our exploration, Hezbollah can also prevent it from doing so.”
“Lebanon is neither poor nor bankrupt, but there are those who are conspiring against it to destroy it completely. There are those who rush to sell the state’s property. It’s not permissible to turn Lebanon into a country of beggars,” he went on to say, pointing out that “We are able to prevent the ‘Israeli’ enemy because Lebanon is rich and strong, so why should we turn to beggars and wait for the International Monetary Funding?”
Back to the internal files, Sayyed Nasrallah emphasized that “The file of bank depositors resembles a tragedy for hundreds of thousands of Lebanese.”
“The new parliamentarians’ signatures on the draft resolution presented by the Loyalty to Resistance bloc preserve the rights of the depositors. It is a major injustice for depositors to bear the responsibility for losses and the main culprit is Lebanese banks,” he said.
Moreover, His Eminence added that “The Lebanese judiciary must be dealt with, and a fair state means having a fair and transparent judicial system as well as qualified judges.”
To the Lebanese, Sayyed Nasrallah said: “Some call for partnership and cooperation while others call for exclusion; and you have to choose between those two choices. Had those who have this exclusionist mentality been able to exclude us, they would’ve done this since ages ago, but indeed they couldn’t. There are political parties today that present themselves as the opposition, while they are from the 1950s in politics.”
“Today you are in front of either choosing a team that insists on civil peace and serving the people and another team that kills people in broad daylight. The Lebanese are asked to choose between those who call for civil peace and cling to it despite being killed on the roads of Tayouneh and those who offer their services to foreign forces and are ready to make a civil war in Lebanon. Today you choose between those who employ their foreign relations to make Lebanon a strong nation, and the other team that brings the foreign money to add it to their bank accounts. Today you choose between a team whose main concern in Lebanon, and another team whose main concern is to please the US and other countries. You have to honestly select between those who shoulder the responsibility no matter what are the difficulties and between the team that has been deceiving you for years. You are in front of electing the real sovereigns who want Lebanon a strong nation, and the fake sovereigns who want it an exposed country,” he addressed the crowd.
Highlighting that “We, in Hezbollah, are neither tools nor agents nor chess pieces,” Sayyed Nasrallah explained that “The Islamic Republic does not interfere in Lebanon, neither in politics nor in elections, and you have seen which ambassadors are touring Lebanon.”
“The truthful are the ones who did not abandon Lebanon. As for the deceivers, they are the ones who will jump from the boat of responsibility, with what they earned from their money, and then present themselves as saviors. You the people of resistance, those whose houses and companies have been destroyed, who sacrificed thousands of martyrs and endured, we're certain about your response and that your votes belong to the resistance and its allies,” he concluded.