Bukhari: Lebanon’s stability will always remain a priority

Saudi Charge d'Affaires in Beirut, Walid Al-Bukhari, stressed Saturday that Lebanon's stability has always been and will remain a priority.

"The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia harbors a sole concern that Lebanon remains an independent, sovereign, free, secure and prosperous Arab country, and to continue marching towards being a pioneer, characterized by openness, creativity, culture, arts and media," said Al-Bukhari.

The Saudi Diplomat's words came at the "Third Coffee Cup" Forum, entitled "Visual Media and Coexistence," held under the patronage of Caretaker Information Minister, Melhem Riachi, at "Beit Beirut" in Sodeco this afternoon.

Al-Bukhari said that the Forum provides an opportunity for reviewing together "the joint responsibility of a number of heads of diplomatic missions and academic specialists in media affairs and the role of the visual media, in an effort to enhance the gains of coexistence and address all threats that aim at undermining our Arab nation and seek to divide us on the basis of races, ethnics and sects."

"From within this architectural masterpiece, which Lebanon turned into a museum documenting the civil war, we inaugurate the 'Third Coffee Cup', stressing the importance of coexistence in Lebanon characterized by pluralism and sectarian diversity, freedom of opinion and expression, and we are thankful to all those who contributed to this initiative," Al-Bukhari concluded.

In turn, Caretaker Minister Riachi addressed the attendees saying, "It is Beit Beirut, home of war and peace...If man knows that every war would end in peace, he would not resort to war as a means of communicating with his human brother...But unfortunately, we are going through situations of mental disorder that make us resort to war, perhaps because peace needs two, while one is enough for war!"

"The media shoulders a responsibility that must not be borne in most cases because its actual mission is to portray public opinion as well as to create public opinion, which is an honorable duty of the media, particularly mass media or visual media," Riachi explained.

He deemed that the media, despite its shortcomings, cannot be held responsible for compromising coexistence in any way.

"The Taef Accord, which we all agreed to, is what fosters coexistence, and visual media, as well as media in general, must address this guardianship from different approaches that protect freedom, which is one of the basic pillars of this nation," Riachi underlined.

Among the prominent figures attending the "Third Coffee Cup" Forum this afternoon were: Caretaker State Minister for the Displaced Mouin el-Merehbi; Caretaker Culture Minister Ghattas al-Khoury; MP's Tarek el-Merehbi and Walid al-Baarini; Beirut Governor, Judge Ziad Shbib, and a number of Arab Ambassadors and Consuls and Lebanese media representatives.

Source: National News Agency