As the ruling majority March 14 coalition won Lebanon's elections and dealt a blow to the Hezbollah-led March 8 party, a prominent Lebanese scholar said it is was unlikely that further wars or assassinations would take place in the country, hit hard by four years of turmoil.
Shiite Sheikh Mohammaed Hassan al-Amin said that the current regional and international circumstances do not encourage further divisions or confrontations and dismissed speculation that Lebanon's Shiites would be sidelined.
"It is unlikely that further unrest takes place in the south," he said. "Since the end of the July 2006 war, the south has been calm and peacekeeping forces are doing their job there."
Amin added that any decision related to war or peace should be taken by the entire Lebanese state and that this could be in coordination with the resistance.
When asked how the loss of the March 8 coalition would affect Shiites in Lebanon, Amin replied that the results do not marginalize the country's Shiites or make a deprived minority of them.
The Lebanese voted for their sovereign, unified nation that is no longer subordinate to any local or external power. They proved that they pledge allegiance to Lebanon before anything else
Mohammaed Hassan al-Amin
"The political system transcends sectarianism, plus the results could be looked at positively since few Shiites voted in the elections. The Shiite political powers in Lebanon do not necessarily represent the Shiite people," he said.
Amin added that not all Shiites are represented in the parliament and that a new election law will change the quota and will lead to the emergence of new Shiite faces other than the incumbent ones.
"The Lebanese voted for their sovereign, unified nation that is no longer subordinate to any local or external power. They proved that they pledge allegiance to Lebanon before anything else"
Meanwhile a former American ambassador to Beirut praised the Lebanese people for a successful vote and said the results represented the will of the people and their desire that their nation be in charge of both politics and security.
Jeffrey Feltman, currently the Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of State for Near Eastern Affairs, said that Hezbollah's arms constituted a threat to Lebanon's national security and the resistance will stay powerful even after giving up its arms.
Feltman, who was U.S. Ambassador to Lebanon, added that Hezbollah's artillery was a threat to Lebanon's national security and that the resistance will stay powerful even if it gives up its weapons.
"The disarmament of Lebanese militias is not only dictated by the Taif Agreement, which ended the civil war, but also by Security Council resolution numbers 1595 and 1701," he told Al Arabiya.
If Hezbollah insists on refusing to disarm and sticking to a political role, Feltman argued, this could expose Lebanon and the entire region to several dangers.
(Translated from Arabic by Sonia Farid)
The disarmament of Lebanese militias is not only dictated by the Taif Agreement, which ended the civil war, but also by Security Council resolution numbers 1595 and 1701