By Fouad Siniora, Prime Minister, Lebanon
(Exerpts from the statement addressed to the
Lebanese people on July 17, 2006.)
AS we were preparing for a new phase of reform
and development, here we are again facing Israeli attacks that have
killed civilians, destroyed the country’s roads and airport, hit
its main ports and violated Lebanon’s sovereignty and its
citizens’ rights and dignity. Nothing is stopping this criminal
war machine from murdering our people and leaving them homeless.
The fourth day of this aggressive war saw the
destruction of many civilian locations and acts of murder in the
South, the Nort and the Bekan. This machine of war and destruction
is targeting our cities and villages.
As much as we are suffering, we are determined
to concentate all our efforts on saving the country. In these dark
days, I am thinking of each one of you. I am thinking of the
children who are in the shelters or who have lost a mother, a
father, a brother or a sister. I am thinking of the mothers, the
elderly and the wounded. I am thinking of those who have nowhere to
go and those who are trying to escape but Israel’s attacks follow
them everywhere. I am thinking of the children, women and elderly of
the towns of Marwahin, Doueir and Bayada who were murdered by the
Israelis while they were trying to escape the raids.
Lebanon’s wound bled during the catastrophe in
our beloved Palestine and it is bleeding again with these continuous
What is happening today pushes us more than ever
to be united in order to preserve Lebanon’s safety, sovereignty
and independence and the dignity of its citizens.
This war has surpassed the issue of the
detainees; it is now the cause of a people whose territory and
security is being violated by Israel for unjustified reasons. Israel
is imposing a collective punishment that does not have any moral or
legal legitimacy. Our country today is facing one of the fiercest
attacks that has ever been witnessed by any country or any people in
The government has stated that it was not aware
of what was to take place, does not adopt the operation carried out
by Hezbullah to capture the two Israeli soldiers and does not
endorse Hezbullah actions, Israel has no right to devastate Lebanon,
render its citizens homeless and destroy its ports. This makes us
more dedicated than ever to adhere to the government’s sole right
to protect Lebanon and the Lebanese from any threat or attack.
Our government and people are facing fierce
aggression, to which we will not surrender.
The Lebanese government holds the Israelis
responsible for this humanitarian and economic catastrophe in
Lebanon. We were still working on erasing the signs of the Isaeli
invasions in 1982, 1993 and 1996 and now Israeli aggression is
targeting us once again.
Lebanon is a cursed country that needs immediate
and comprehensive help to rebuild what has been destroyed by this
We are very proud of our country and we will
overcome this crisis. Lebanon will survive; Lebanon will survive;
Lebanon will survive.