His Holiness Pope Francis will not be visiting Lebanon before the formation of a new government, sources confirmed to MTV News on Wednesday.
The confirmation came on the eve of Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri‘s visit to the Vatican in which he will meet with the Pope to discuss the dire situation in Lebanon.
Through his visit, scheduled for later today, Hariri will reportedly try to urge the international community to turn its focus on Lebanon.
Hariri‘s efforts to form a new government in line with the French initiative have been futile and countered with resistance from Lebanon’s president Michel Aoun.
Aoun reportedly insists on gaining veto power for his political team and will prolong the governmental void at all costs to achieve his goal, claiming it necessary to protect the rights of Christians in Lebanon.
The concern for Christian rights is mirrored by his son-in-law Gebran Bassil, who heads the Free Patriotic Movement (FPM).
On the day before Hariri is scheduled to meet the Pope in The Vatican, Gebran Bassil visited Lebanon’s top Christian cleric, Maronite Patriarch Bechara Boutros Al-Rahi, in Bkerki.
During the meeting, he reiterated that he will continue the struggle for the rights of the Christians. “If Christ had given up, there would be no Christianity,” he said, as though comparing himself to Jesus.
It is uncertain if Gebran Bassil‘s sectarian statement meant that he has been “struggling” for the human and civil rights of the Christians in Lebanon, which hasn’t been the case.
All people of all sects in Lebanon have been deprived of the very basic right to live with dignity under his ruling party. Thus, the Lebanese Revolution which he and his party vehemently oppose.
It remains that his claim of “struggling” could have meant just for the seats his FPM party insists to have in the yet-to-be-formed government.