Lebanon’s Geagea: Bassil’s Tours Bringing Back Civil War Atmosphere

Friday, 12 July, 2019 - 05:45 -

Lebanon’s Geagea: Bassil’s Tours Bringing Back Civil War Atmosphere

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FILE PHOTO: LF leader Samir Geagea speaks during an interview with Reuters at his home in Maarab, Lebanon, October 31, 2014. REUTERS/Mohamed Azakir
Beirut - Asharq Al-Awsat
Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea has accused Free Patriotic Movement chief Gebran Bassil of bringing back the Civil War atmosphere during tours he has made to several regions in the country.

“A political official cannot say whatever he wants. ... Look how tense the situation became,” Geagea said at a news conference he held on Thursday.

Bassil, who is Lebanon's Foreign Minister, has delivered controversial speeches on tours across the country, which have triggered strong reactions from other politicians.

At his news conference Thursday, Geagea also criticized the draft 2019 state budget, saying it does not reflect the country’s need to effectively cut spending.

The draft budget should have included reforms amid the ongoing economic crisis in Lebanon, said the LF chief.

Taxes on imports will not affect prices, he said.

Stopping the smuggling of goods through illegal crossings is one way to bring money to the treasury, he added.

Parliament is set to meet next week to discuss the budget, which was approved by the government in May.

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