Disagreements within the powerful Lebanon group led by MP Gebran Bassil are no longer hidden. Given the inconsistent viewpoints of its members and the group’s leader, MP Alain Aoun’s recent positions have revealed much of what is concealed within this weak alliance.
Sources close to the Free Patriotic Movement confirmed to Sawt Beirut International that disagreements are significant, and a number of deputies are persuaded that Gebran Bassil is no longer equipped to oversee the presidential matter.
Some MPs think they joined the bloc because of their alliance with Hezbollah, and it is no longer possible to reject Hezbollah due to the selection of the Marada Movement’s leader. Others believe that the Free Patriotic Movement provided Hezbollah with a Christian cover that it could not have imagined, and that the party’s current approach to the movement is incorrect, therefore it is not permitted to impose a candidate who is refused by Christians.
According to reports, the party committed a mistake and should have nominated Bassil instead of Franjieh, or at the very least find a candidate who does not provoke the latter.
Some deputies consider that the priority is to ensure the victory of the coalition and not the personal interests of MP Bassil. From this standpoint, Hezbollah played on the divisions within the strong Lebanon bloc, and tried to win over the anti-Bassil deputies with a basket of gains in exchange for voting for Franjieh.
The sources reveal that there was interference by the former President of the Republic, Michel Aoun, with these deputies to discourage them from fabricating any attempts that lead to the fragmentation of the bloc.