Antelias, January 2nd, 2003
1 – The Lebanese public opinion was shocked one more time in few months about the closing of a third satellite media channel, “New TV”, after the total and final closing of two other departments, “MTV” channel and “Mount Lebanon” radio. The common visible reason between the three cases is to prevent the injury of the nation and one of the friend or brother State, in an unprecedented way and procedures in the history of the Lebanese media, where the political decision precedes any other legal or security decision. The closing of the new channel proves one more time that the nation entered the dark tunnel which retreats the responsible freedom surfaces on which Lebanon is based via written and oral pacts.
2 – The principle of the “national security priority” actually adopted by some Lebanese officials shall not be translated at the expense of the primordial principle on which Lebanon is based, namely the coexistence in the light of public and private freedoms, unique guarantee of everyone’s dignity, communities and individuals. It is afraid that, by the application of the principle of the “national security priority”, Lebanon loses its particularity and be transformed to a monophonic and tyrannous State as some Arab States in which peoples are absent from participating in the self – determination, and deprived from practicing this sacred democratic mission on behalf of one person, one movement or one tribe and at the expense of the interest of the people and the nation.
3 – The history proved that the freedoms respect is the first basis of the evolution, development and real peace of people. It is regrettable that our Arab World, while some of its regions are subject to the most violent tyrant forces in the modern era, is sunk into silence and inertia because of the absence of the recognition of human rights and relative international pacts. It is seriously concerned that the actual pretexts of some officials constitute a step backward leading to get Lebanon out of its original Arab path open to civilized world toward the era of ignorance and tyranny. This step threatens every mature and responsible Lebanese, not to say the persons who are in responsible and decisive positions related to Lebanon’s destiny, its generations’ future and its status between nations and people.
4 – When posing a question mark on the way of closing “New TV” channel, whether about the prejudicial judgment or the absence of relative institutions, and the abolition of the role some of them, the Forum considers that the power statement about the freedom persistence in Lebanon is not convincing under the continuity of closing “MTV” channel and “Mount Lebanon” radio and under the practice of methods which blow the principles on which Lebanon the messenger and model is based.
Translated by: Joyce Tary