BEIRUT — Following a meeting with Grand Mufti Abdel-Latif Derian at his Dar al-Fatwa headquarters in Beirut, President Michel Aoun on Saturday said it was important for Sunnis to participate in politics and that he opposed any potential boycott of the upcoming parliamentary elections by the community.
Here’s what we know:
• In a press conference, Aoun said, ”We do not want the Sunni sect to leave politics in Lebanon,” referring to media speculation that top Sunni figures might join former Premier Saad Hariri in suspending their political activities.
• “We do not want a [Sunni] boycott to happen,” the president told reporters.
• Prime Minister Najib Mikati on Friday said that Sunni figures would not boycott the upcoming parliamentary elections, scheduled for May 15.
• “We will definitely not call for a Sunni boycott for the good of the community, and whoever wants to run should run, and the elections are taking place on the scheduled date,” Mikati said after meeting with the Grand Mufti.
• On Tuesday, Derian said that Hariri’s decision to leave political life was “regrettable,” a day after the three-time former premier announced he was suspending his political work and called on his party, the Future Movement, not to run in the parliamentary elections.
• Another former premier, Tammam Salam, announced before Hariri’s decision that he would not run in the elections.