Hezbollah must become a political party, Lebanon needs a new social contract — Naharnet

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UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said Hezbollah must become a political party, while noting that Lebanon needed a “new social contract” that would lead to the reconstruction of the middle class ravaged by poverty. brutal economic and financial crisis of the country.

António Guterres, who is on a four-day visit to Lebanon, made his remarks in an interview with the Saudi daily Asharq al-Awsat published on Tuesday evening.

Calling the situation in Lebanon sad and heartbreaking, the UN chief called on Lebanese political leaders to show unity in order to carry out fundamental reforms.

He added that Hezbollah, which has a powerful military wing backed by Iran, must transform itself into a political party to become like the rest of the country’s political forces.

Noting that the Lebanese army requires huge investments in advanced equipment and means, António Guterres stressed that “extremist” groups, whether “Shia or Sunni”, should not be an alternative to the state. .

And urging Gulf countries to be part of Lebanon’s renaissance, the UN chief said the small country needed a new social contract that would rebuild the middle ground that was destroyed.

He also said he received clear promises from President Michel Aoun, President Nabih Berri and Prime Minister Najib Miqati that free and fair legislative elections will be held in early May.

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