Canadian FM Holds Talks in Beirut
Canadian Foreign Minister John Manley arrived Monday in Beirut on the third leg of a Middle East tour, to discuss the latest developments in the region and the Western campaign against terrorism.
The minister was quoted by the Beirut-based Daily Star as saying that he was “very enthusiastic” about Tuesday’s meeting with President Emile Lahoud, Prime Minister Rafik Hariri, and Foreign Minister Mahmoud Hammoud.
“I am particularly happy to be in Lebanon, the homeland of so many of my Canadian friends of Lebanese origin, who have been calling on me for several years to visit their home country,” Manley said.
The Canadian official visit comes after the Lebanese government has refused to ratify two out of 12 conventions on fighting terrorism, which were demanded by the United States as part of its global anti-terror campaign.
Several European countries urged Lebanon to sign the two conventions in order to sustain the diplomatic fight against terrorism once the war in Afghanistan achieves its goals, it added.
Beirut said that the United Nations alone had the authority to request that Lebanon sign, adding that the manner in which Washington was pressuring Lebanon was “inappropriate,” according to the sources – Albawaba.com