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Sep 22, 2006
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Lebanese Peace Party Leader Roger Edde on the Possibility of Lebanese-Israeli Peace

#1286 | 03:01
Source: Al-Jadeed TV (Lebanon)

Following are excerpts from an interview with Roger Edde, leader of the Lebanese Peace Party, which aired on NewTV on September 22, 2006.

Roger Edde: I support a strategic peace between Israel and Lebanon, and between Israel and Syria, with a solution for the Palestinian issue...

Interviewer: But at whose expense?

Roger Edde: At the expense of those who do not want peace, at the expense of those who do not want the existing world order, or the Arab and Islamic order, and at the expense of those who always oppose and reject.

Interviewer: If we sign a peace agreement with Israel, whose interests will prevail?

Roger Edde: Lebanon's, first and foremost.

Interviewer: But Israel's interests always precede any other consideration, even when the international community is concerned.

Roger Edde: What is our problem with Israel? I'm talking about Lebanon vis-a-vis Israel, just like Egypt and Jordan each [negotiated] with Israel... When President [Hafez] Al-Assad met with President Clinton, he discussed the Golan Heights – Syria vis-a-vis Israel... He did not discuss South Lebanon or the Shaba' Farms. We are talking about Lebanon vis-a-vis Israel. We have an international border, and we want to regain every last inch. This is only natural. We have a dispute over the Shaba' Farms, and we have the right to demand their return. This issue has a solution. It can be resolved through Resolution 1701.

The real problem is the issue of resettling the refugees. This is a real and serious problem. We ask Egypt and Jordan, which have peace agreements with Israel, and we ask Qatar, which has special relations with Israel, despite everything Al-Jazeera TV broadcasts daily... We ask these countries, which are close to Israel and maintain relations with it, and which have a direct interest in the Palestinian future, to negotiate, along with the U.S., which is the most capable of exerting pressure, and along with the international community, in order to resolve this problem. Once it is resolved, as far as we are concerned, we will have no further problem with Israel. In such a case, peace between Lebanon and Israel will become possible. Of course, we hope that this peace will be in the framework of a comprehensive plan, which will take into account the future of the Golan Heights, and the return of the Golan to Syria. I think this is possible once Syria truly decides to engage its regime in the adventure of peace. This has been known to all Middle East experts in the past 20 years. Even Yitzhak Shamir, the most stubborn Israeli leader – I don't mean this as an insult, that's how he wanted to be - was willing to negotiate over the Golan.

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