Geagea presents three solutions to end Lebanon's presidential impasse
Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea on Monday presented three “solutions” to end the presidential impasse, 15 days after former President Michel Suleiman left office with no successor to take his place in the coming six years.
Among his suggested “solutions,” Geagea proposed selecting two nominees from the March 14 and the March 8 coalitions other than himself and Free Patriotic Movement leader MP Michel Aoun, and voting for one of them at the parliament.
“We have three solutions for the current impasse. First, General Aoun can attend the parliamentary session and whoever wins we will congratulate them, and the battle could be consensual if Aoun wanted,” Geagea said in an interview on MTV on Monday evening.
“And if Aoun does not agree on this solution, I, speaking on behalf of March 14, call for agreeing on two consensual names and electing one of them at the parliament,” he added.
As for the third option, Geagea said he is ready for any other suggestion proposed by his political foes.
But the Christian leader announced that he will not support Aoun's run for office.
“I cannot eliminate myself and my history and agree on Aoun, and you cannot call this a 'historic settlement' but an elimination of all my alliances and my history,” he explained.
“I cannot be asked to stop all of this and accept Aoun (for office).”
“General Aoun currently rejects any suggestion and is holding onto his nomination. I have told him honestly that I cannot accept him (as president),” Geagea added.
“Since the beginning I have said that it is not a 'myself or no one else' issue, but (Hizbullah deputy chief) Sheikh Naim Qassem's ally General Aoun is the one rejecting to discuss candidates other than himself.”
Geagea also considered that National Struggle Front's nominee MP Henri Helou cannot remain a candidate if he perceives that Aoun and himself are both nominees.
"(Progressive Socialist Party leader) MP (Walid) Jumblat, who is an expert on the Lebanese Pact, cannot obstruct the elections then,” he remarked.
Geagea revealed that he approves of all names in the Bkirki list of nominees for presidency. The list includes former Interior Minister Ziad Baroud, Demianos Qattar and Roger Deeb.
The LF leader also said he would “certainly” endorse Maronite Patriarch Beshara al-Rahi if he decided to take part in the presidential race.
“But I do not advise him to submit his candidacy because he is a religious man and the presidency is a political post,” he said.