BEIRUT: Minister Mitri Surprised By Those Who Wish To "Reduce Armeni

MINISTER MITRI SURPRISED BY THOSE WHO WISH TO "REDUCE ARMENIAN POLITICAL REPRESENTATION"

NowLebanon
May 20 2008
Lebanon

Culture Minister and acting Foreign Minister Tarek Mitri stated that
the majority has "expressed willingness to accept the proposals"
set forward at the Qatar meeting, noting that the position of the
opposition is "not yet ripe, though it may become so in the coming
hours". He stated that there were hopes that an agreement on the
electoral law would be reached in Doha, before the rival political
leaders would return to Beirut.

Mitri was surprised at the tendency of some to reduce the issue of
Armenian voters and Armenian political representation. He stressed that
"The Lebanese Armenians did not participate in an armed conflict with
anyone or against anyone."

The culture minister explained in an interview with radio station,
"Voice of Lebanon" that the Armenians in all their factions and
political parties have "agreed on staying true to their Lebanese
heritage when it comes to independence."

He added that Armenians have their political parties, one of which
is the Tashnaq, which has a big influence within the community. The
minister noted that the party has its political and electoral alliances
but that "alliances can change and nothing is fixed".

Mitri concluded that exploitation is not good for anyone. He stressed
that the Armenian electoral constituency lead by the Tashnaq belongs
to no one, and that no one has the right to employ a "reserve" in
political struggles, since "only God knows where that would lead
the country."

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