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Lebanese Anti-Iran Gathering Accuses Hezbollah of Barring Its Annual Meeting in Beirut

Lebanese Anti-Iran Gathering Accuses Hezbollah of Barring Its Annual Meeting in Beirut

Wednesday, 3 October, 2018 - 08:30
Former Lebanese MP Fares Souaid. (NNA)
Beirut - Caroline Akoum
The anti-Iran Lebanese Saydet el-Jabal gathering was barred from holding its annual meeting at Beirut’s Bristol Hotel.

The gathering includes members of the former March 14 camp and was set to discuss ending Iranian hegemony in Lebanon. The meeting was scheduled to be held on Sunday.

The hotel management informed the officials that it would be unable to host their gathering after they had announced the theme of this year’s meeting.

When contacted by the Asharq Al-Awsat, the hotel management said that the decision was “strictly administrative.” It refused to provide further details.

Former MP and member of the Saydet el-Jabal gathering Fares Souaid condemned the move, saying the hotel took the decision two hours after the meeting’s agenda was announced.

“This is a reflection of the general atmosphere in Lebanon, which is hostage to Hezbollah and Iran,” he told Asharq Al-Awsat.

“It is likely that the hotel received advice against hosting our meeting,” he added.

The Saydet el-Jabal has been holding its annual meeting for the past 18 years.

Souaid continued: “Hezbollah now controls the country and its freedoms, which are in constant decline.”

“Our television screens and electronic platforms are open to hordes of people that insult each other, while a gathering that is dedicated to Lebanese affairs and a free and sovereign nation is prevented from holding a meeting,” he lamented.

“We have yet to hear a statement of condemnation from a political or partisan side in power. What has happened has never taken place at the height of Syrian hegemony over Lebanon,” he remarked.

“How can caretaker Foreign Minister Jebran Bassil take ambassadors on a tour to refute claims by the Israeli prime minister and declare Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah an honest man and also prevent political figures from saying that Iran is imposing its hegemony over Lebanon?” he wondered.

Saydet el-Jabal will not succumb to the pressure, vowed Souaid, saying the gathering will hold its annual meeting.

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