The citizens of Lebaneses today comemmorated the seventh anniversary of Lebanon’s Cedar Revolution.
The Cedar Revolution was a chain of demonstrations across Lebanon triggered by the assassination of the former Lebanese Prime Minister Rafik Hariri on March 14, 2005.
On 2005, Lebanese people took to the streets en masse in a peaceful demonstration to demand a sovereign and democratic country, free from foreign interference, and to call for the truth behind the assassination of Prime Minister Rafik Hariri.
Department Spokesperson Victoria Nuland today said in 2005, long before the inspiring and dramatic events of the past year, the people of Lebanon shattered the myth that the only way to produce change in the region is through violence and conflict.
“The United States salutes the brave and proud Lebanese who peacefully took to the streets in 2005 to demand a better future for themselves and their homeland.” -Ms. Nuland
She stresses that without a doubt, challenges remain for the people of Lebanon.
Foreign-backed groups seek to turn back the clock, Ms. Nuland added.
She says the brutal violence unleashed by the Assad regime against its own people risks destabilizing the region, including Lebanon.
The United States supports Lebanon’s political leaders’ efforts to maintain security and to prepare for the day when a democratic government in Damascus will usher in a new era in Lebanese-Syrian relations.
The United States will continue to stand with and support the people of Lebanon and all those across the region as they work for democratic governments that will fulfill their aspirations and respect their rights.
On February 14, 2005, killers assassinated former Prime Minister Rafiq Hariri and 22 others with a car bomb in downtown Beirut. This attack represented an attempt to silence not only Hariri, but all those voices in Lebanon calling out for independence and sovereignty.
However, this tragic day had the opposite effect. The Cedar Revolution that followed amplified the voices of those seeking justice and democracy, culminating in Syria’s withdrawal from Lebanon. Undeterred by continuing political violence, these forces have bravely continued their fight for a free and independent Lebanese state.