Saad Hariri reportedly informed Free Patriotic Movement chief Michel Aoun that he rejects the appointment of a new army commander ahead of the election of a new head of state.
Yet the Future movement leader and former PM does not object, in principle, to names already in the hat.
Sources revealed in comments published in the Arab language edition of An Nahar today that Hariri's envoy told Aoun that he doesn't object to the appointment of Commando Regiment chief Brig. Gen. Chamel Roukoz as army chief, for example.
Roukoz's tenure ends in October while the term of army commander Gen. Jean Qahwaji expires at the end of September.
However, Hariri stressed that ending the presidential vacuum is a priority before a new army commander can be appointed as "the new head of state, whoever he was, has to have an opinion on the matter."
Conflicting reports emerged recently on whether Hariri agreed on the appointment of Roukoz as army chief.
One such report suggested that that Hariri informed Aoun about his consent on the appointment of Roukoz as military chief in return for the appointment of head of the Internal Security Force Information Branch Imad Othman as ISF chief.
Aoun has allegedly been seeking to receive political consensus within his own ranks on the appointment of Roukoz as army chief as part of a package for the appointment of other top security officers, but Aoun thwarted such plans.
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