Some of the highest and noblest goals lie in preserving human dignity, freedom, as well as physical and moral integrity, which is not currently the case in Lebanon. As a matter of fact, these are being threatened today because of the state’s weakness, the absence of the notion of citizenship, and the dominance of sectarian parties.
There is a sort of interconnection between the country and its citizens; the stronger the country grows, the stronger its citizens grow, thus promoting the concept of citizenship, and vice versa. Unfortunately, the concept of citizenship is fragile in Lebanon.
The Lebanese identity is built on the stories of its communities. This identity has been carved over history; and is far from being artificial, rather it stems from the Lebanese people’s experience and will.
Individual and public freedoms are jeopardized by the sectarian parties that seek to undermine individual and collective initiatives not falling under their direct control.
The human rights of women, children, minorities and foreign workers remain violated or not fully secured in Lebanon.
The Lebanese people are still bearing in their souls the effects of forced displacement, destruction and fighting that ravaged the Lebanese territory. A nation cannot be rebuilt unless all Lebanese people seek true national reconciliation.
Second - The principles:
Citizenship is the Lebanese people’s first identity.
Citizens are the source of all laws and authorities.
Citizenship is about rights and duties.
Equality and justice before the law are two prerequisites for citizenship.
Citizenship and the rule of law guarantee the security and dignity of individuals and groups in Lebanon.
National accord is protected by the citizen and the law.
Personal freedoms are protected by the Constitution and by the law, and they are prerequisites for decent and efficient citizenship. The freedom of any citizen cannot be limited unless in accordance with the provisions of the law. In this regard, the Lebanese National Bloc Party made contributions on several levels, especially through its work on submitting and passing a law that allows lawyers to appear with their clients before the military investigator.
Every Lebanese citizen has the right to reside in any part of the country and enjoy it under the rule of law. Hence, there shall be no classification of citizens on the basis of any affiliation whatsoever.
Third - The vision:
Genuine national reconciliation and catharsis must be sought in order to get over grudges and prevent the causes of internal fighting from resurfacing.
The concept of citizenship must be instilled in current and future generations through families, school curricula, and educational programs which warn against the risks of citizenship demise and attempts to replace it. This way, the human being will always have the highest value in Lebanon.
All discriminatory legal provisions must be abolished and unfair practices against women and children must be criminalized in line with the Human Rights Charter. Additionally, the Nationality Law should be amended to achieve equality between men and women.
All aggressions to the freedom of expression (in speech and in writing), freedom of publication, freedom of assembly, and freedom to form associations and parties must be curbed in line with civil rights and the Charter of Human Rights.
The enforcement of the “Law on Missing and Forcibly Disappeared Persons” must be followed up on, and the needs of the families and victims of arbitrary detention and torture must be met.
Lebanon should ratify the International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance, and join the International Criminal Court.
Lebanon must also improve living conditions in prisons, and put an immediate end to cases of arbitrary detention and torture.
Moreover, Lebanon must step up the fight against the human trafficking phenomenon and similar organized crimes, as they are among the most serious crimes against society.
Public or private amnesty laws in cases of more serious crimes should not be passed.