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The Damascus Agreement 1985 (The Trio-Party Agreement)
THE SYRIAN SPONSORED PEACE AGREEMENT FOR LEBANON SIGNED IN DAMASCUS ON DECEMBER 28, 1985

Agreement signed by Mr. N. Berri, Mr. E. Hobeika, Mr. W. Joumblatt and witnessed by the Vice-President of Syria Mr. A. Khaddam

Preamble:

Amid the tragic, extraordinary circumstances that have been afflicting Lebanon, the conferees have drawn up a national solution based on our people's aspirations towards liberating the land from the Israeli occupation, restoring security and peace to the homeland, and establishing a sound, democratic regime by upholding justice and equality, both politically and socially, and realizing the Lebanese people's ambitions in all fields. this solution requires a comprehensive national commitment and pan-Arab strength represented in implementing special relations with fraternal Syria, which did not and will never spare any effort, under President struggler Hafez El-Asad's leadership, to deliver Lebanon and protect its independence, unity, and Arab affiliation and to lead it toward a democratic solution for its various struggles.

Chapter 1: General Principles.

Lebanon's Identity: Lebanon is an independent, free, and sovereign state in terms of its territory, people, and institutions within its boundaries outlined in the Lebanese Constitution that are internationally recognized. It is of Arab affiliation and identity; an active, founding member of the Arab League; and it is committed to the various Arab League charters. The state embodies these principles in various fields and areas without exception. Lebanon is also a member of the United Nations and is committed to the UN charter.

Lebanon's Unity: Absolute adherence to Lebanon's unity. All partition plans, all forms of discrimination, and all proposals of political decentralization such as federations, cantons, and decentralization in security and development are rejected. this position makes inevitable the imposition of personal safety and settlement in any Lebanese site in any form and regardless of the period of this settlement.

The Political System: Lebanon is democratic, parliamentary republic established on the basis of respect for public freedoms, particularly the freedom of opinion and creed. It is also based on the principles of separation of powers and social justice and equality of duties and rights of all citizens, without any discrimination or preference, within a free economic system based on comprehensive scientific planning of various resources, needs and activities in all areas. It is a country of human dignity and cultural ambitions.

Lebanon's Liberation:

  1. Continuing the escalation of resistance to liberate Lebanon from the Israeli occupation, liquidate its direct as well as indirect presence, reject all sorts of security arrangements and their suspect tools, and thwart any local tool that is tied or dealing with the occupation.
  2. Providing all resources and pooling all official efforts to back the national resistance in the South in terms of manpower and funds, in its capacity as the main base the process of liberation and the correct bases unifying Lebanon.
  3. Supporting the firmness and steadfastness of the southern Lebanese citizen on his land by providing human, material, and economic means of development.
  4. Working to implement Resolution 425 and all UN Security Council resolutions pertaining to comprehensively removing the Israeli occupation and rejecting all Israeli conditions and restrictions.
  5. Adhering to the armistice agreement signed on 23 March 1949.

Chapter II: The Principles of the Political System.

Efforts to strengthen the spirit of national growth and democratic practice require replacement of the current sectarian formula with a national one that can guarantee the people's participation and representation in a political authority capable of expressing the people's aspiration and ambitions on the national level and on the basis of freedom, social justice, equality, equal opportunities, development, and security. Hence, it was agreed that the building of Lebanon's future and the establishment of a modern, developed state is free from legacy of the past necessitate the cancellation of the sectarian system. As a result, a new constitution will be drafted on the basis of reinforcing the homeland's unity, independence, Arab affiliation, and democratic system, as well as a full equality among the citizens. This constitution, which will be drafted within one year at the most, will include the following basic principles provisions:

  1. The Lebanese system is republican, democratic, and parliamentary.
  2. The Lebanese are the source of authorities and will practice their national supremacy through constitutional institutions as outlined in the future constitution.
  3. The Lebanese are equal before the law and enjoy equal civil, political, and social rights and assume duties without discrimination.
  4. Regarding the assumption of public positions and posts, no Lebanese has any special privileges apart from his qualifications within the legal conditions.
  5. Personal freedom shall be safeguarded and protected by the law and the freedom of belief shall be protected. In this regard, stress is put on Article 9 of the current constitution, as well as on public freedoms regarding opinion, expression, education, parties, societies. residence, labor, election, gatherings, possessions, and trade union work. All these should take place within the limit of ;law on a par with democratic countries.
  6. The economic system shall be considered as free, organized, and capable of guaranteeing individual initiative so long as it does not conflict with the general order and public interest. This system is based on a comprehensive scientific development of various energies, needs, and activities in all areas. It is also based on a long term development plan, considering Lebanon's unity an indivisible unit.
  7. Social justice shall prevail; social cooperation shall be considered a national obligation; national education shall be the citizen's right and duty. Compulsory education shall be provided for all citizens through the end of intermediary course.
  8. A new election law will be drafted to secure the broadest and best representation of a national basis and to consider each province as one electorate in order to safeguard national unity and to express the will to coexist. All citizens-men and women-have the right to vote when they become 18 years old in accordance with conditions defined by the constitution.
  9. A senate will be established to assume, together with the chamber of deputies, legislative powers regarding fateful issues: amending the constitution, war and peace, international treaties and agreements, factional civil status, the citizenship law, the senate elections.
  10. the new government will immediately form a preparatory committee to draft the new country's constitution in preparation of approval.

The Stage of Moving toward Complete Non-Sectarianism:

  1. Moving from the sectarian formula to another formula that guarantees national cohesion under the canopy of the democratic. parliamentary, republican system involves a transitional and gradual stage toward complete non-sectarianism. At this stage, reforms and measures of a constitutional, systematic, and legal nature mentioned in this document will be adopted in accordance with the following:

A. A new government will be formed immediately. The beginning of the transitional stage will be the date this government is formed.

B. The stage of ending the state of war in Lebanon will be no more than one year beginning with the date of forming the new government in accordance with what is stated in Chapter V of this agreement.

C. the present Chamber of Deputies will be entrenched and expanded after forming the new government by appointing new deputies in accordance with the principles of equal sharing between Muslims and Christians and equality among the three greater sects, and on the basis of numbers determined by this agreement. Within the period of one year at the most, all legal and constitutional texts relating to implementing the transitional reforms mentioned in this document will be applied.

D. The transitional stage will end when the Chamber of Deputies makes a decision to determine the beginning of the date for working for a total cancellation of sectarianism in a accordance with the following:

a. After restoration of normal situation in the country, the government will call for electing a new Chamber of Deputies on the basis of a new electoral law in accordance with the principles mentioned in the agreement.

b. During the second half of the term of the first elected Chamber of Deputies, the government will propose a plan to determine the date of the beginning work to cancel sectarianism in parliamentary representation, the three executives [the prime minister, the president, and speaker of the Chamber of Deputies], the ministries, and class A jobs. the majority required for approving the plan will be two thirds of the members of the Chamber of Deputies.

c. If the plan is not approved, the vote required for its approval will become 55 percent beginning with the second half of the term of the second elected Chamber of Deputies.

d. If the plan is not approved the cancellation of sectarianism in parliamentary representation, in the presidencies, the ministries, the class A job or those equivalent, during the first half of the term of the third elected Chamber of Deputies, will be decided legally.

Chapter III: The Rules of the Transitional Stage.

During the transitional stage, and in order to establish sound balance in jurisdictions between the legislative and executive powers, along with guaranteeing the independence of the judicial system under the canopy of the democratic, parliamentary, republican system, the following rules will be adopted and the constitutional or organizational laws and articles will be issued, amended, or suspended in accordance with the principles that would guarantee their applications:

In the executive power:

I. The President of the Republic:

1. the election of the President: After reforming the conditions of the legislative power in accordance with the principles that will follow, the majority required for electing the President of the Republic will be 55 percent of the legal number of the Chamber of Deputies in session that will follow the first session. The legal quorum for conducting elections in all sessions will be seven-tenths of the number of members of the Chamber of Deputies.

The power of the President of the Republic:

A. the President of the Republic is considered the head of state and symbol of the country's unity. He is responsible for respecting the constitution and for safeguarding Lebanon's independence, unity, territorial integrity, and national unity. The President of the Republic shall take a constitutional oath.

B. The President of the Republic is considered the supreme commander of the Army.

C. The President of the Republic signs all decrees and issues laws within limited periods after approval by the competent authorities. He also transfers draft laws to the legislative power. He also has the right to oppose [laws], in accordance with the principles stated in this document, within the periods defined in it. During the forty day period, the President of the Republic shall also issue all the laws of a top-priority nature that the Council of Ministers transfers to the Chamber of Deputies.

D. the President of The Republic names the prime minister and issues decrees forming the cabinet in accordance with the provisions of Article 5 of this chapter. He will also issue decisions considering the cabinet as resigned in case enunciated in this document. Until legislative power is formed by increasing the number of deputies in accordance with this agreement, the government will be formed in accordance with the requirements of reconciliation and in a way conducive to implementing this program.

E. The President of the Republic presides over and participates in discussions-with no voting power during the meetings of the following:

  1. The Supreme Defense Council.
  2. The Council of Ministers in limited cases pertaining to approving the policy statement that defines the policy of the government; declaring a state of peace or war, general mobilization, or a state of emergency; Dissolving the Chamber of Deputies; and approving the constitutional draft law, election law, and general amnesty.
  3. The President of the Republic can call the cabinet into emergency session in certain cases when the country is seriously threatened.
  4. The President of the Republic can call the cabinet into session once a month at most in order to discuss draft laws that he may have turned down, provided the agenda of such session does not include any other topics.

F. The President receives credentials, receives diplomatic representatives, and presides over official receptions.

G. The President grants state medals.

H. The President is not held responsible for the consequences of his exercising his powers except in cases which the constitution terms as high treason.

I. the President grants special reprieves and proposes and issues general amnesty law.

J. The President issues decrees accepting the resignation of any of the cabinet ministers after the agreement by the Prime Minister. He can ask any minister to resign after the agreement by the cabinet.

K. Whenever the need arises, the President can address messages to the Chamber of Deputies and ministers if he deems it necessary.

L. The President chooses the employees of the presidency from among the employees of the state administration.

II. The Council of Ministers:

1. T Council of Ministers is composed of its chairman, a number of ministers of state, and ministers with ministerial portfolios. The necessary quorum for a cabinet meeting is two-thirds of its members.

2. The executive power will be prerogative of the Council of Ministers, which exercises all executive and administrative powers and draws up the state's general policy in its capacity as the body solely responsible to the legislative power and the people. These powers includes:

A. Drawing up the state's general policy in the political, economic, defensive, financial, developmental, educational, and social fields as well in other areas.

B. Drawing up draft laws and decrees, making the necessary decisions to implement state policy, and assigning top-priority precedence to draft laws whenever it deems this necessary.

C. Insuring implementation of laws and regulations and monitoring the performance of all state organs and establishments, including the military ones.

D. Enacting and canceling the state of emergency as well as war, general mobilization, and international treaties and agreements, taking into consideration the prerogatives of the legislative power.

E. Directing and coordinating the work of the ministries and al state administrations and general establishments.

F. Drawing up the state budget bill and laying down comprehensive and long-term development plans.

G. Dissolving the Chamber of Deputies by a justified decision and calling the Chamber of Deputies into extraordinary sessions.

H. Appointing class A employees or their equals and asking them to resign or accepting their resignation in accordance with legal practice.

III. The Ministerial Council

The Ministerial Council is made up of the prime minister and the government's ministers and makes its decisions on a consensus basis. In case of dispute, the issue will be presented to the Council of Ministers to make the appropriate decision. This Council's duties are:

  1. To continue efforts to achieve the required reform in all areas.
  2. To continue efforts to implement the plan to end the war within the period defined for it.
  3. To continue efforts to secure transitional conditions for implementation of the new constitution.
  4. To propose the broad lines of state policy and to define its basic options to be presented to the Council of Ministers.
  5. To prepare for and present to the Council of Ministers plans, trends, and concepts.
  6. To approve all decrees that do not need a decision from the Council of Ministers including relieving one or more ministers of their posts.
  7. The members of the Ministerial Conical are considered members of the Supreme Defense Council.
  8. The General Secretariat of the Council of Ministers comprises a number of assistant secretaries general, councilors, and specialized persons who from a special organ for the Council of Ministers-and organ which is linked to the prime minister and which carries out any work demanded by the Council of Ministers.

IV. The Prime Minister:

  1. The prime minister resides over the Council of Ministers meetings in all cases except in other cases mentioned elsewhere in this document. He also conducts sessions, proposes agendas, and participates in discussions when he has the right to vote.
  2. He presides over meetings of the Ministerial Council in all cases.
  3. He accepts the resignation of one or more ministers and refers the decree to the President.
  4. He is the deputy of the head of the Supreme Defense Council.
  5. He oversees implementation of the Ministerial Council's recommendations and decisions and the Council of Minister's decisions and follow up the work of the ministries and departments.

V. The Formation and Resignation of the Government and the Time Limit for issuing laws and decrees:

  1. The government is formed in accordance of the following procedures:
    A. The President holds mandatory parliamentary and political consultations and, in light of them, issues a decree naming the prime minister-designate
    B. Following parliamentary and political consultations, the prime minister designate forms the government and presents a list of the government members to the President. If he agrees, he issues decrees.
    C. If the President refrains from signing the decree within two weeks after receiving the list, the prime minister designate will submit is case to the parliament. If his view point wins 55 percent of the parliament members' votes, the President should issue the decree. If the parliament does not approve the government, the prime minister will be considered as relieved of his post and consultation will be renewed.
    D. If the prime minister refrains from presenting the list of the government members to the President within one month following his designation, he will be considered incapable of forming the government. In this case, consultations will be renewed.
  2. Following this agreement the government will be formed and the prime minister and ministers will be named in accordance with he requirements of the accord in order to implement this program. This will continue until the legislative power is reformed by increasing the number of parliament members in accordance with this agreement.
  3. The government should win the parliament's confidence.
  4. All decrees and draft laws will bare the signatures of the President, the prime minister, the minister concerned, taking in account the power of Ministerial Council, except in naming the prime minister or accepting the cabinet's resignation or considering the cabinet as having resigned in the following cases:
    A. If the prime minister resigns.
    B. If the Council withholds confidence.
    C. If half of the cabinet members resign.
  5. A 30-day period will be given for signing draft decrees and decrees of transforming laws approved at the council by the President of the Republic or turning these decrees down within this period for justified reasons. This period will be effective from the date of the draft decrees are submitted to the general directorate of the presidency of the republic. When the period ends without signing or turning down the draft decrees for justified reasons, the decree will be effective by law. If he turn it down, it will be resubmitted to the Council of Ministers, and the Council of Ministers insists on its decision, the President of the Republic then shall sign the decree. These period will also be applied within periods stated in Article 56 of the current Constitution.

In case of differences, and if the prime minister and minister in charge of the draft decree, the draft decree then will be transformed to the Council of Ministers for settlement. The same period will be given to the prime minister and the Ministerial Council as of submitting the draft decrees for the general secretariat. However, laws approved by the Chamber of Deputies will be applied within periods stated in Article 56 of the current Constitution.

In the Legislative Power:

  1. During the transitional stage, popular representation will be expanded by increasing the number of deputies to 198 in a manner that will achieve the soundness and justice of this representation within the framework of equal sharing between Muslims and Christians and equality among the three greater sects in accordance with the principles of this document until the sectarianism in representation is canceled after the end of the transitional stage.
  2. In order to allow elections to be held, temporary appointment of deputies shall take place to fill vacant seats, seats that may become vacant, or those seats newly made by the Council of Ministers.
  3. The speaker of the Chamber of Deputies, his deputy, and member of the Chamber of Deputies will be elected for a 2-year term renewable.
  4. During the transitional period, the government shall be granted exceptional powers for legislation in all fields except the state's general budget for one year renewable.

In Civil Service Jobs:

  1. The rule of sectarian representation shall be canceled in civil service jobs, the judicial organ, and security and military institutions. In order to guarantee just implementation of this principle, the rights of wronged sects shall be settled within a period of 6 months.
  2. Exception of this cancellation are class A jobs or their equivalent in the public and mixed administrations and institutions, independent institutions, and the judicial organ. These jobs shall be within the framework of equal sharing between Muslims and Christians. In no way will this mean a monopoly of any job by any sect.
  3. During the transitional stage, the government will supervise the reforming and purging of the state's civil and military institutions in accordance with he principles mentioned in this document.

In the Supreme Constitutional Courts:

A Supreme Council for trying presidents and ministers as stated in the Constitution and a court to control the constitutional nature of laws and to settle all conflicts resulting from parliamentary and presidential elections shall be formed. The president of the constitutional court shall be appointed in accordance with the Council of Ministers proposal and approval by the Chamber of Deputies.

In the Social and Economic Council:

A Social and Economic Council to represent economic, social, trade unions, and scientific functionaries shall be established. The law shall determine the fields of specialization of this council.

In the Administrative Decentralization:

The administrative system stated in Legislative Decree No. 116 dated 12 June  1959 to reinforce the administrative decentralization shall be reexamined:

  1. By increasing and redistributing governorates in a manner that will secure citizens' interests and national cohesion.
  2. By strengthening municipal councils and unions and governorates and expanding their powers.
  3. By adopting popular representation in councils in the governorates.
  4. By transferring most administrative responsibilities and duties from the central authority to the local authority, thus facilitating and speeding up services for the people.
  5. By reforming the judiciary in order to ensure direct services to disputant parties.
Note: The prerogatives of the establishments mentioned in this agreement, 
in accordance with the new Constitution, will be confined to economic 
and development as follows:
  1. Laying down a policy of economic rehabilitation and reconstruction and comprehensive development which will be defined in a coordinated, clear program and which will be supervised mainly by the state. This will require a speedy reform of its administration, and enhancement of its performance, and the forming of specialized administrations or expansion of existing ones. The provisions of this program aim at revitalizing the various sectors of national economy on the basis of integration and harmony, taking into consideration the need to preserve natural and environmental wealth, provided this is based on the principle of free economy.
  2. Devoting special attention to areas that were affected by war and to those areas that have been deprived for decades. A development plan should be drawn up for these areas so that the best possible income and wealth can be distributed among citizens and areas so that fair, integrated developmental equilibrium can be realized for the homeland.
  3. Working to realize comprehensive social justice through financial, economic, and social reforms; adopting the five-year plan in economic and financial planning of the budget; and completing the stages of generalizing the social security system, including security for the aged and ensuring free medical care for all citizens.
  4. Preserving private property and individual enterprise, which must not harm public interest. This requires reforming taxation laws, monitoring their application, protecting the rights of the treasury, and supporting the structure of the public sector.
  5. Drawing up a comprehensive housing program, giving first preference to displaced persons and those who were harmed by the war, and encouraging cooperative societies.
  6. Drawing up a comprehensive program to utilize water resources and implementing projects that meet this desire, particularly the Al-Litani river project.

Education and learning:

  1. Placing education and learning in the service of building the future Lebanon on national, nonsectarian basis and utilizing Lebanon's manpower.
  2. Supporting education in a way that will lead to spreading it and making it general, free, and compulsory; developing educational programs; and unifying educational curricula, particularly books on history and social upbringing.
  3. Supporting formal education on all levels and stressing the national role of the University of Lebanon by giving it the necessary and sufficient backing, particularly in the technical colleges, in order to allow it to play its role in uniting the Lebanese society and making room for all the Lebanese people to acquire the necessary level of education to promote their economic, social, and cultural development.
  4. Stressing the role of technical and vocational education by giving it first preference and linking it to the comprehensive construction process in Lebanon.
  5. Preserving the system private education.
  6. Supporting scientific research by providing the necessary assistance for public establishments in this field.

Concerning the issue of nationality:

  1. Enacting a new law of nationality and settling outstanding issues that are being discussed. Special courts will be formed to look into problems of nationality for one year.
  2. Canceling the mention of religion on identity cards.

In the Military and Security Fields:

1. The Army:

  The Army's basic task is to protect the nation from any foreign aggression, particularly Israeli aggression against Lebanon. the Army's most important role in this regard is resisting the Israeli occupation of Lebanese territory. As for reconstructing the Army, this will be effected in accordance with a nationalist, ideological creed to whose principles all Army personnel will be committed and which will be based on the principals that defines Lebanon identity and affiliation with its Arab surroundings. The Army's structure will be in harmony with Lebanon's pursuit of strategic coordination and integration with Syria.

In accordance with this concept, the following principles will be adhered to:

A. The duties of the Army are defined within the Supreme Defense Council in accordance with the defense law.
B. In order to rehabilitate the Army, it is to be withdrawn to its camps in accordance with a comprehensive security plan to be approved by the national unity government, which will demand Syria's help during the rehabilitation in the following fields: training courses, exchange of expertise and information, and national cohesion.
C. The national unity government will make decisions and measures to work out programs for rebuilding and rehabilitating the Army in accordance with the principles in this document, including the drafting of a new defense law.
D. The army will be kept way from internal and political conflicts.
E. The compulsory military service law will be implemented immediately.
F. Army intelligence work is restricted to military and tactical security.

2. The Internal Security Forces:

   The duty of maintaining security in Lebanese territory is entrusted to the internal security forces. These forces will be reinforced in equipment and numbers and their central organs and regional units Will be reorganized as quickly as possible. This requires recruitment sot hat the forces can be used effectively to protect the citizens' security in all Lebanese area. Organs for collecting information will also be reinforced.

3. The Public Security:

  The public security should be strengthened so that it can carry out the basic duty represented in controlling the international border in addition to its other duties stipulated in the laws and regulations that govern its work such as issuing passports and taking care of foreign nationals. This requires units to protect land and sea borders as well as ports and airports except the border with Israel, which is the duty of the Army.

Chapter IV: The Distinguished Relations Between Lebanon and Syria:

  The most prominent meaning in Lebanon's Arabism in its distinguished relationship with Syria and its inevitable, fateful link to Syria. Proceeding from its principle, relations should be based on a strategic integration concept between Lebanon and Syria because their fateful issues are one as a result of their affiliation, history, and geography, a fact that requires a high decree of coordination in various fields. We believe that Lebanon's distinguished relations with Syria should be genuine so that every understanding between  the two countries can be included in clear cut bilateral agreements  which will be translated into legal frameworks in both countries in order to prevent any political party from tampering with these firm principles. Thus, relations will not remain at the mercy of whims, interests, and regional and international factors.

  The word "integration" in this agreement means the following:
  The potentialities and capabilities of each country should complement the potentialities and capabilities of the  in order to reinforce each country's situation and achieve their joint interests, on the condition that this would be defined and interpreted within the framework of the bilateral agreements mentioned in this agreement.

     The areas of the distinguished relations between the two countries are wide and diversified.

1. In the field of foreign policy:
   Complete and firm coordination should cover all Arab, regional, and international issues on the condition that the two countries agree on the requirements of this coordination, one after another and in accordance with proposed issues and subjects, so that they can take positions on them. In this regard, direct, guaranteed, and secret means of communications should be provided for senior officials in charge of foreign policy in both countries.


2. In the field of military relations:
   The fateful struggle which Syria is waging in its efforts to establish a strategic parity with Israel as a result of well known Arab circumstances, such as the exclusion of Egypt from the arena of struggle and the emergence of Arab-Palestinian axis with the aim of confusing Syria politically, military, and in the field of security, makes it incumbent on Lebanon not to allow itself to be the gateway through which Israel can deal any blow to or threaten Syria. Therefore, the agreement must be reached to allow stationing of Syria military units in specific points in Lebanon that will be defined by joint military committees in accordance with the requirements of the Syrian and Lebanese strategic security until such time as the Lebanese Army is rebuild and rehabilitated in accordance with a national, militant ideology that will differentiate between the genuine friend and the true enemy and which will be in harmony with Lebanon's affiliation and national options. When such an army, which will have defensive tasks against the enemy, is completely build, it will take its real, strategic role in the strategic balance in the region through its role on Lebanese soil.

3. In the field of security relations:
   The saying that Lebanon's security is part of Syria's security and that Syria's security is part of Lebanon's security is correct. It should be implemented on the ground through Lebanese-Syrian security integration that will be expressed in the following:

A. Joint definition of the main threats that endanger the security, independence, and system of government in both countries.
B. Unified view toward such primary threats and hence, an agreement on deep-rooted remedies for such threats that will commensurate with sovereignty of both countries and which will realize their cherished goal. These remedies will be administered by the competent local organs of both countries.
C. Agreements should be approved to ensue coordination among security organs, each in accordance with its interest in both countries and in the two countries' interests.

4. In the field of economic relations:
   Coordination and integration will be maximized in this field despite the different systems of government. As for the organizing of this coordination, it will be defined by an expert committee from both countries that will supervise proposing of bilateral agreements and laws implementing them.

5. In the field of education:
   Coordination in the field of education is the pillar of entrenching kinship between the future generations of both countries through national upbringing based on Arab affiliation and the correct practice of this affiliation. This coordination will be effected through joint committees that will draw up nationalist, integrated educational basis. Within the framework, and in accordance with the principles of educational reform in Lebanon, the freedom of education will be preserved, taking special care to prevent this freedom from becoming a new seed of division among Lebanese people or creating hostility toward the Arabs and Syria.

6. In the field of information:
   Ensuring the continuation of the special relations without sabotage is represented in preventing any Lebanese-generated media attacks against such relations. This requires that the Lebanese media be on high level of national and pan-Arab responsibility and adhere to the principles and aims enunciated in the national policy that is agreed and approved constitutionally and legally, taking into consideration the respect of the freedom of opinion and expression.

7. The practical application:
   Upon beginning of the transitional phase of the national solution project, the new government will form a ministerial committee that will supervise the provisions of this chapter and put it into practice.

Chapter V: The Mechanism of Ending the War.

   The phase of ending the war in Lebanon will be limited to one year beginning with the date the new government is formed. During this year, all constitutional and legal texts pertaining to implementing the transitional reforms of this document will be approved and implemented. The mechanism of ending the war is based on the following principles and rules:

1. Immediate cease-fire with Syria's help, opening the roads and crossing points, and stopping supplies of weapons and ammunition by land, sea, and air.

2. Strengthening the role of the security committee and expending the area of its jurisdiction to include all Lebanese territory. Representatives of the internal security forces and Syrian officers will be included in the committee. Accordingly, Syrian forces will be stationed in agreed upon points, which will lead to extending moral support and military backing t the internal security forces during the phase to end the war in accordance with a comprehensive security plan which national unity government will approve.

3. Strengthening the internal security forces and general security, opening the door to recruitment, and entrusting the internal security forces with a task of safeguarding security in all Lebanese areas in order to spread the state's authority in these areas without exception.

4. Liquidating the militias and military and paramilitary organizations in their various forms and working to delete their elements in the country and in the nation's institutions.

5. Collecting weapons, with the state to buy them from both the Lebanese and non-Lebanese parties.

6. Ensuring freedom of movement for Lebanese citizens and guaranteeing their work and residence in all parts of Lebanon.

7. Finding a deep-rooted solution for the problem of the displaced Lebanese persons; recognizing the right of each displaced Lebanese person since 1975 to return to its land, house, and work; enacting the necessary laws that guarantee this right; and ensuring the necessary means to begin rebuilding. the return of displaced persons will begin within three months of the formation of the new government. This will gradually continue in light of the available security requirements and will completely end within three years.

Dated 28 December, 1985

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