Miqati: Major Gap between My Electorate and FPM's Candidate
Tripoli MP and ex-PM Najib Miqati told a Free Patriotic Movement delegation on Monday that there is a “major gap” between his supporters and FPM founder MP Michel Aoun, whose chances to be elected president have largely surged in recent days.
“We share the FPM's vision regarding the essential, national and reformist issues, but as to the presidency I was clear with the FPM delegation about the presence of a major gap between a segment of the Lebanese, especially those whom I represent, and the FPM's candidate,” Miqati said after talks at his office with MPs Simon Abi Ramia and Alain Aoun.
“We discussed this issue and this remains my stance and hopefully the stances will become clearer in the coming days,” the ex-PM added.
“I explained that any bilateral agreements cannot negate the historic accumulations regarding the ties among all Lebanese,” Miqati went on to say.
Education Minister Elias Bou Saab of the FPM announced Sunday that al-Mustaqbal Movement leader ex-PM Saad Hariri has officially decided to endorse Aoun's presidential bid.
Lebanon has been without a president since the term of Michel Suleiman ended in May 2014 and Hizbullah, Aoun's Change and Reform bloc and some of their allies have been boycotting the parliament's electoral sessions, stripping them of the needed quorum.
Hariri, who is close to Saudi Arabia, launched an initiative in late 2015 to nominate Marada Movement chief MP Suleiman Franjieh for the presidency but his proposal was met with reservations from the country's main Christian parties as well as Hizbullah.
The supporters of Aoun's presidential bid argue that he is more eligible than Franjieh to become president due to the size of his parliamentary bloc and his bigger influence in the Christian community.