April 18, 2006
President Bush Welcomes Prime Minister Siniora of Lebanon to the White House
The South Lawn
President George W. Bush and Prime Minister Fouad Siniora of Lebanon address the press on the South Lawn Tuesday, April 18, 2006. White House photo by Paul Morse
11:51 A.M. EDT
PRESIDENT BUSH: It's been my honor to welcome the Prime Minister of Lebanon to the Oval Office. Prime Minister, thanks for coming.
PRIME MINISTER SINIORA: Thank you very much for giving us the opportunity.
PRESIDENT BUSH: Well, we just had a really interesting discussion. I told the Prime Minister that the United States strongly supports a free and independent and sovereign Lebanon. We took great joy in seeing the Cedar Revolution. We understand that the hundreds of thousands of people who took to the street to express their desire to be free required courage, and we support the desire of the people to have a government responsive to their needs and a government that is free, truly free.
President George W. Bush and Prime Minister Fouad Siniora of Lebanon address the press on the South Lawn Tuesday, April 18, 2006. White House photo by Paul Morse We talked about the need to make sure that there is a full investigation on the death of former Prime Minister Hariri, and we'll work with the international community to see that justice is done. We talked about the great tradition of Lebanon to serve as a model of entrepreneurship and prosperity. Beirut is one of the great international cities, and I'm convinced that if Lebanon is truly free and independent and democratic, that Beirut will once again regain her place as a center of financial and culture and the arts.
There's no question in my mind that Lebanon can serve as a great example for what is possible in the broader Middle East; that out of the tough times the country has been through will rise a state that shows that it's possible for people of religious difference to live side-by-side in peace; to show that it's possible for people to put aside past histories to live together in a way that the people want, which is, therefore, to be peace and hope and opportunity.
And so, Mr. Prime Minister, we're really glad you're here. I want to thank you for the wonderful visit we've had, and welcome you here to the White House.
Lebanon PM hails exit of 'disappointed' Israeli troops
Mon Oct 2, 12:39 PM ET
BEIRUT (AFP) - Lebanese Prime Minister Fuad Siniora has welcomed the departure of "disappointed" Israeli troops from southern Lebanon but warned much remained to end the Jewish state's "occupation".
"The occupier has left disappointed," Siniora told a cabinet meeting Monday the day after Israeli troops all-but completely withdrew from Lebanon after their July-August war with Hezbollah.
"But we still have tasks to complete: recover the Shebaa Farms, free Lebanese prisoners held in Israeli jails and the enemy still refuses to hand over maps of the landmines they left behind" after leaving in 2000, he said.