Montreal, Canada - March 05, 2005

RCPL asks the Syrian authorities to respect the Lebanese people's choice and the UN resolution 1559.

On March 5, 2005, Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad addressed the Syrian parliament and vowed a « gradual », instead of a full and immediate withdrawal of his troops from Lebanon. No timetable for a « full withdrawal » was set in his speech.

During his speech Syrian President said:
« We will pull all our forces in Lebanon to the Bekaa area and from there to the Syrian-Lebanese border ».

RCPL is gravely deceived because his speech:


Didn't give a clear and accurate timetable for the withdrawal of the Syrian troops from Lebanon


Remained vague as to the geographic limit of the Syrian troops redeployment


Ignored the popular Lebanese consensus about the full and immediate withdrawal of Syrian troops form Lebanon. This consensus has been clearly manifested in the past few weeks in Beirut.


Had no mention of the fate of hundreds of Lebanese citizens still  illegally detained in Syrian prisons

For the above reasons, RCPL urges the Canadian government and the United Nations Secretary General Kofi Anan to pressure the Syrian authorities to:


Respect the Lebanese people's choice and the UN Resolution 1559 and immediately withdraw the 15.000 Syrian soldiers and intelligence agents from Lebanon


Reveal the fate of hundreds of Lebanese still illegally detained in Syrian prison since more than 30 years.

RCPL believes that a complete Syrian withdrawal from Lebanon will help the Lebanese people revive their democratic system far from foreign interference. It is also the first step towards a free and fair elections scheduled to be held next spring.

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