Protesters gathered in Tripoli’s Al-Nour Square on Saturday to oppose Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil’s single-day-visit to meet with Tripoli-based representatives of the Free Patriotic Movement as part of his tours of various districts in the country, the National News Agency reported.
“We restricted our assembly to the Free Patriotic Movement supporters in the city as we did not want to bother any of its residents with the taken security measures especially after receiving multiple threats,” Bassil told FPM supporters during his speech at the Rachid Karami International Fair.
“We object to dividing Lebanon or to turn it into a country of cantons,” Bassil said.
“My visit to Tripoli is not the thing igniting sedition but stopping me or the FPM followers from visiting the city is what is stirring it. The dangers on the civil peace lie in impeding the Lebanese from communicating with each other,” Bassil indicated.
“We don’t need permission to visit any city because the country does not consist of reservations,” he added.
“There is no way back to the logic of war; we move forward towards peace and co-existence,” he noted.
Members of the Lebanese Army and the security forces accompanied the FM amid fears that his visit would spark tensions similar to the Aley incident which led to the death of two people.