Le dédale libanais

Le Liban se prépare à une élection présidentielle qu’aucune de ses factions rivales – en fait, qu’aucune des parties rivales de cette partie du monde – ne peut se permettre de perdre.

A commencer par la Syrie. En 2005, le régime du Président Bachar el-Assad a été contraint de retirer son armée du Liban, à la suite de l’assassinat de l’ancien Premier Ministre Rafiq Hariri. La Syrie est largement accusée de ce crime, et les pressions internationales et libanaises ont contribué au retrait des troupes syriennes. Pourtant, dans un discours prononcé peu après, el‑Assad a averti que rien ne pourrait rompre les relations entre la Syrie et le Liban.

El-Assad est conscient que l’élection d’un président qui soutient la souveraineté et l’indépendance libanaises compliquera le retour de la Syrie – et el-Assad, comme ses alliés le reconnaissent en coulisses, ne veut rien de moins. En effet, c’est lui qui a décidé en 2004 de prolonger, de manière inconstitutionnelle, le mandat présidentiel du fidèle pro-syrien Emile Lahoud, décision qui a déclenché la crise politique à l’origine du meurtre de Rafiq Hariri et l’émergence d’une coalition de groupes anti-syriens, comptant bon nombre d’anciens alliés syriens.

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