December 04, 2006

Fouad Siniora


From The Daily Star: Siniora vows to stay on despite mounting pressure.

Lebanese Premier Fouad Siniora vowed Sunday to remain in office despite opposition supporters camped outside his offices for the third day calling on him to resign. As nationalist songs were blaring from the nearby tents of the opposition in Downtown Beirut, a Mass was held at the Grand Serail to commemorate the assassination of Industry Minister Pierre Gemayel.

Gemayel died in a shooting ambush in a Christian suburb of Beirut last month.

The service was led by Beirut Maronite Bishop Boulos Matar and attended by Siniora, his anti-Syrian ministers, Gemayel's family, and Druze leader Walid Jumblatt, as well as other politicians from the March 14 Forces.

Siniora said the protests would not achieve the opposition's goal, hinting that they might take counter-action if the Hizbullah-led sit-in drags on.

"A solution to any problem does not come through the street because this means might trigger a counter-means and we will not reach any result," Siniora told reporters after the Mass.

"I will not leave; I am going to stay here for as I enjoy Parliament's confidence. I am here by the confidence of the Lebanese and the constitutional institutions," he said.

Siniora and his supporters describe Hizbullah's campaign as a coup attempt led by Syria and its ally, Iran. "We are used to coups d'etat in Lebanon and the Arab world and we know its results and there was one attempt in 1961 and it failed," he said, "so why try something that is already known to fail?"

To see more Newsmaker Caricatures by John Cox, click here.

Posted by Forkum at December 4, 2006 06:52 PM