Suleiman: Lebanese Nationalism-Arab Belonging Important in Nation Building

President Michel Suleiman said Wednesday that the choice of Beirut as host of the Arab Thought Conference is an acknowledgment of Lebanon’s role in the service of Arab culture.

“The Lebanese challenge to allow all sects to participate in decision-making … increases our responsibilities” amid efforts by some people to thwart such attempts, Suleiman said during the opening of the conference at the Phoenicia intercontinental hotel in Beirut.

“Conciliation between Lebanese nationalism and Arab belonging … are important to move forward in nation building,” he said.

The conference was held under the patronage of Suleiman and was attended by Speaker Nabih Berri and Premier Saad Hariri.

Before Suleiman’s speech, Prince Khaled al-Faisal, who is the head of the Arab Though Foundation, said the conference “was held in Lebanon because we are keen to seeing it (the country) overcome its current crisis.”