Jumblat: Iran Punishing Lebanon by Delaying Government Formation

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Jumblat: Iran Punishing Lebanon by Delaying Government Formation

Progressive Socialist Party leader Walid Jumblat said that Lebanon is paying the price for the U.S.-Iran tug of war, deeming the obstruction of the government formation through the so-called "independent Sunni MPs knot" is part of the reaction of Iran and Hezbollah to the U.S. sanctions.

"Iran is punishing us by delaying the formation of a new government," Jumblat said in an interview with Al-Joumhouria newspaper.

"I fear that the current stalemate would impact the Lebanese Lira and lead to economic ruination because it is not a simple thing for a small country like Lebanon to have a public debt that is close to $100 billion," he warned.

"Does Hezbollah think that economic deterioration will spare its turf in Beirut's southern suburbs and its community? Everyone will pay the price because we're not better than Greece.

Jumblat urged Hezbollah to realize how critical the current phase is, calling on the party to abandon its demand to include independent Sunni lawmakers, who are not affiliated to the Future Movement, in the new government.

"Honestly, I can't understand Hezbollah's plan or strategy as I am still failing to perceive the whole Sunni knot amid the growing challenges facing the country," he said.

Jumblat noted that he would have preferred not to allocate the Health Ministry to Hezbollah, voicing concern that this would entail U.S. sanctions.

The PSP leader stressed that he won't end his political career with another "humiliating" settlement with the Syrian regime, adding that he will relinquish the "awful" political pragmatism that undermines his personal and national dignity.

"We already sealed a settlement with Bachar Assad after the assassination of Kamal Jumblat as well as after the assassination of PM Rafik Hariri and all the other March 14 martyrs. I think that this is enough."

"I want to die with a clear conscience," he said.

"Bachar will not leave Lebanon alone and won't forget about it. He wants to take revenge on what is left of the March 14 coalition," Jumblat warned.

Source: Kataeb.org