Syria to appoint a Christian ambassador to Beirut
Tayyar Leader, General Michel Aoun told the pan-Arab daily Al-Hayat in comments published on Monday that Damascus is considering appointing a Christian as ambassador to Beirut. The report said possible candidates include Syria’s current ambassador to Spain, former Minister of Transportation Makram Obeid. Another candidate is the editor in chief of the ruling Baath Party’s Al-Baath newspaper, Elias Mrad. Sources told Al-Hayat that the final decision would be taken “soon.” They said that a Syrian team is currently inspecting a number of existing buildings between the Jnah and Bir Hassan districts in south Beirut and that the exchange of ambassadors is likely to take place prior to the November 22 Lebanese Independence Day. Syrian Foreign Minister Walid Moallem confirmed that Damascus and Beirut would open embassies in each other’s capitals by the end of the year, but denied that any decision been taken on who would head Damascus’ head of mission in Lebanon. “The ambassador’s name cannot be known before consulting the two governments,” Moallem told An-Nahar daily in remarks published Monday.
I must admit, this news certainly raised many eye-brow.
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