09/26/2008, 00.00
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"Partisan" posters and banners removed from streets of Beirut

Their elimination is intended to foster the process of national reconciliation. The decision, announced by Hariri, was made during his meeting with a delegation from Hezbollah.

Beirut (AsiaNews) - "Partisan" political banners and posters will disappear from the streets of Beirut, because they create tension among the various groups. The announcement was made yesterday by Saad Hariri, the leader of the Mustaqbal group and of the parliamentary majority, at the end of the meeting with the speaker of parliament, Nabih Berri.

The announcement by Hariri, according to whom the political banners, posters, and depictions must disappear from Beirut "within three days, and then from the other cities", comes one day after the meeting between the Sunni leader and a delegation from Hezbollah. The decision was made on that occasion, and is connected to the attempt to advance national reconciliation. Hariri and Hezbollah also decided that representatives of their parties must open regular meetings on the neighborhood level, "to foster communication and solidarity in all of Lebanon, and especially in Beirut".

Speaking with journalists, Hariri maintained that a meeting with the head of Hezbollah, Hassan Nasrallah, "is possible", but that some time will be needed to prepare it. It should address questions of security. But he replied very curtly to a question about the threat by Michel Aoun, leader of the Free Patriotic Movement, to abandon the sessions of national dialogue. "If Aoun wants to abandon dialogue let him face the repercussions."

But George Bush is expressing support for Lebanon and for the reconciliation process to President Michel Suleiman. Suleiman, in the United States for the General assembly of the UN, also had a meeting with the secretary general of the United Nations, Ban Ki-Moon, who said that Lebanon is "a priority". In Washington, the Lebanese president also visited secretary of state Condoleezza Rice, with whom he discussed aid for his country's army.

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