[Imc-beirut] Hisb metre maids
sensenig at cyberia.net.lb
Sun Feb 5 23:14:10 PST 2006
Re: He thanked Hizbullah for its cooperation with his ministry in certain security matters
Now that the "national resistance" is not only resposible for securing the border with Israel, but also for internal security, why not put them to really good use and have them regulate traffic!
Copyright (c) 2006 The Daily Star
Monday, February 06, 2006
Sabaa quits Cabinet after failure to contain riots
By Adnan El-Ghoul and Nafez Qawas
Daily Star staff
BEIRUT: Against the background of violent protests against the Danish Consulate in Beirut Sunday, the Lebanese political leaders held Interior Minister Hassan Sabaa responsible, forcing him to resign.
After leaving the Cabinet session, Sabaa said he resigned because internal security lacked "unified political decision in addition to lacking the necessary personnel and equipment." He thanked Hizbullah for its cooperation with his ministry in certain security matters.
Sabaa added: "To prevent what happened today, I would have had to order the security forces to fire at the protesters, an action I would never take against the Lebanese civilians."
Sabaa said he did what was possible in his capacity to do his job but he could not prevent what happened or control the crowds "whose force overwhelmed the security forces deployed by the Interior Ministry and the army."
Asked if his resignation was in response to demands from political leaders, Sabaa said: "Before Samir Geagea called for my resignation, I announced before the Grand Mufti Mohammad Qabbani that I was going to resign during today's Cabinet session."
In his capacity as Sabaa's deputy, Youth Minister Ahmad Fatfat will be the acting interior minister until Siniora decides to accept the resignation and appoints a new minister."
Communication Minister Marwan Hamade and Minister of State for Administrative Affairs Jean Hogasapian arrived late from Paris and joined the Cabinet session.
Asked if the majority would accept Sabaa's resignation, Hogasapian said: Most probably, not." But Hizbullah and Amal ministers, who had just ended their boycott, might object to Sabaa's resignation and argue strongly against any accusation directed against the Syrian regime, which some majority leaders believe was behind the riots.
Following the violence, most majority politicians called on Siniora to hold an extraordinary Cabinet session to discuss the consequences of the events and take the necessary steps to "contain them and prevent further escalations or sectarian reactions."
Before the session, Siniora said in Baabda the Cabinet will decide if the interior minister should resign or not. "All criminals will be punished and the Cabinet will take action against those who are proved to be negligent," he added.
Siniora said security chiefs, including Army Commander General Michel Suleiman and Internal Security Forces director general Major General Ashraf Rifi, were called to attend the Cabinet session to report on what had happened on the ground.
Following the event, a security meeting headed by Siniora was held at the Grand Serail, in the presence of Sabaa, acting Defense Minister Yaacoub Sarraf, Suleiman, Rifi and the head of the military intelligence, Brigadier George Khoury.
Upon his arrival at Baabda Palace, Sabaa was asked if he would resign. "More probably, yes," he said, adding, "other resignations are also expected."
Earlier in the day, Sabaa defended his position, saying, "My ministry has taken precautionary security measures in cooperation with the security forces.
He stressed the organizers of the demonstration did not fulfill their promises, but rather threw stones, incendiary bombs and fireworks that they brought for that purpose.
"The security forces tried to preserve the security and did not use weapons in facing the intruders in order to avoid human casualties," Sabaa said.
He added that during previous telephone calls, "the organizers vowed that the demonstration would have a civilized and peaceful aspect."
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