Aoun Urges  Stability, Forgiveness After Protests

Aoun Urges Stability, Forgiveness After Protests

President Michel Aoun on Tuesday called for stability in Lebanon and urged forgiveness after a political row involving his son-in-law triggered street protests. Supporters of Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri, a long time political adversary of Aoun, set ablaze tires and blocked roads on Monday in protest against comments made by Aoun’s son-in-law, Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil who had called him “a thug”, Reuters reported. “What happened on the ground is a big mistake based on a mistake,” Aoun said in a statement. “I forgive all those who assaulted me and my family, and I look to those who insulted each other to forgive each other,” he said. In one incident on Monday, gunfire erupted near offices of Aoun’s Free Patriotic Movement east of Beirut. The FPM and Berri’s Amal movement traded blame over the incident. Bassil expressed regret for his remarks in an interview with al-Akhbar newspaper on Monday, but this did little to ease fury in the Berri camp, which said he had crossed “red lines”. Berri says Aoun exceeded his constitutional powers. Aoun says he did not. Lebanon is due to hold a parliamentary election in May, its first since 2009.


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