On Wednesday, November 25, Maronite Patriarch Cardinal Mar Bechara Rai praised the President’s action in sending a letter to the Parliament on the forensic audit issue, saying “Forensic audit was stalled, should this not be pursued? Does this mean the end of this matter, so we say to those who were tasked with this investigation: farewell? The President has fulfilled his duties, and what he has done is the core of his duties”.
“We always demand to fight corruption wherever it is, in all state institutions, in the Central Bank, ministries, public administrations, and regional-local councils, otherwise we are not doing anything. Forensic audit shouldn’t stop and the judiciary must proceed in this issue” Patriarch Rai assured.
The Patriarch also called for a “Salvation Government which is exceptional and abstract, non-political, non-partisan and able to work, since it must face a long and broad path to resurrect the country from death. The country cannot bear a month’s passage without achieving anything in this context”, he added asking, “Who has the right to kill the country in this manner at a time when he has the authority to solve this issue?”
President Aoun met Patriarch Rai, on Wednesday, November 25, at Baabda Palace, in a visit prior to his departure to the Vatican to participate in the inauguration of new Cardinals, where he will also meet Pope Francis.
After the meeting, Patriarch Rai made the following statement:
“You know that when I have to make a visit abroad, especially when I am meeting officials, I come to visit His Excellency, the President, not only to say goodbye but to hear from him a briefing about our situation. This time, I am going to the Vatican, and I am honored to meet the Pope. I will discuss with him our current situation and I will brief him, in detail, about the situation we are living. I will also thank him about his constant interest in Lebanon, and his continuous prayers for us, in addition I will thank him for sending Vatican State-Secretary, Cardinal Parolin, to Lebanon after an exact month of the Beirut Port explosion, and assigning an international day of praying and fasting for Lebanon, in addition to sending aid to several schools. I will thank him, in the name of the Lebanese, and I will tell him that all the Lebanese miss him coming to Lebanon. I will also participate in the inauguration ceremony of the new Cardinals, appointed by His Holiness, and usually all Cardinals are invited to such a meeting with his Holiness”.