Future Movement denies backing Taamir militants
By Mohammed Zaatari
Daily Star staff
SIDON: The Future Movement denied the accusations made by the president of the Popular Nasserite Organization (PNO) MP Osama Saad when he accused it of supporting the armed groups in Taamir, the area outside the Ain al-Hilweh refugee camp in Sidon.
On Friday, Saad held a news conference, on the occasion of the 31st anniversary of the assassination of his father Maarouf Saad, and accused MP Bahia Hariri and the Future Movement of protecting the armed groups in Taamir.
There have been several security clashes in Taamir over the past seven months with the latest occurring last week when clashes almost broke out between the Lebanese Army and the Jund al-Sham militia.
The Future Movement, one of the leading groups forming the March 14 Forces, denied the accusations in a statement released Saturday saying "the Future Movement has never supported illegal weapons and will never do in the future no matter what the circumstances are." The statement described Saad's accusations as "fabricated, void, and untrue."
The movement expressed surprise at how Saad could make such accusations after all the efforts that have been deployed to restore calm in Sidon.
The movement asked Saad to re-examine his claims.
Meanwhile on Sunday following a march organized by the Popular Nasserite Organization to mark the 31st anniversary of Maarouf Saad's assassination, his son reiterated that "the armed groups in Taamir are supported by forces represented in the government."
Saad slammed recent political discourse saying Lebanese politicians "are increasing tension in the country."
He said he feared that after the "Cedar Revolution" (on March 14) "politicians will drag the country into the unknown."
He stressed that Lebanon's current issues should be solved in Lebanon by Lebanese people and not in Western countries such as the U.S. and France.
Saad asked the parliamentary majority "to take responsibility and tackle the crisis by making their own decisions and not have decisions taken for them by America or France."
He also called upon the majority to adhere to the initiative launched by the Free Patriotic Movement and Hizbullah (in early February) that led to a joint "understanding pact."
During the march, representatives from various Lebanese parties, Palestinian factions and civil organizations carried Maarouf Saad's pictures and walked toward Star Square in Sidon where Maarouf was shot on February 26 1975.
Those gathered shouted slogans against Samir Geagea, the head of the executive committee of the Lebanese Forces, calling for him "to get out of Lebanon" because of a speech he gave on February 14, when Lebanon commemorated the passing of one year since the assassination of former Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.
Geagea had said "the sea is in front of us and the enemy is behind us" by which he meant the Syrian regime is Lebanon's enemy. He was later accused of trying to wage a war against Syria.