Time­line: The roller coaster ca­reer of Michel Aoun

The Daily Star (Lebanon) - - LEBANON -

BEIRUT: Main pres­i­den­tial can­di­date Gen. Michel Aoun has had a fiery mil­i­tary and po­lit­i­cal ca­reer. Fol­low­ing are the main high­lights:


Born in the mu­nic­i­pal­ity of Haret Hreik, a south­ern sub­urb of Beirut.


Grad­u­ates from Col­lege Des Frères Sec­ondary School in Furn al-Shub­bak.


Grad­u­ates from Mil­i­tary Academy with the rank of first lieu­tenant spe­cial­iz­ing in ar­tillery di­vi­sions.

Septem­ber 1983:

Aoun’s pre­dom­i­nantly Chris­tian 8th Mech­a­nized In­fantry Bat­tal­ion fought the pro-Syr­ian Shi­ite, Druze and Pales­tinian forces in Souq al-Gharb in Mount Le­banon.


Pro­moted to the rank of gen­eral, and ap­pointed Army com­man­der

Sept. 22, 1988:

Par­lia­ment failed to elect a suc­ces­sor. Out­go­ing Pres­i­dent Amine Ge­mayel dis­missed the gov­ern­ment and ap­pointed a sixmem­ber in­terim mil­i­tary gov­ern­ment headed by Aoun.

March 14, 1989:

Lunched “War of Lib­er­a­tion” against the Syr­ian army, shelled mainly Mus­lim West Beirut neigh­bor­hoods in the process.

October 1989:

Mem­bers of par­lia­ment sign the Taif Ac­cord which brings about a po­lit­i­cal set­tle­ment to Le­banese Civil War. Aoun re­fused to be part of the process cit­ing Syr­ian tute­lage, and dis­solv­ing par­lia­ment.

Jan. 31, 1990:

Aoun-led Army units and Le­banese Forces mili­tia of Samir Geagea clash dur­ing “a war of elim­i­na­tion.” Fight­ing lasts sev­eral months and leaves at least 2,000 dead.

Oct. 13, 1990:

Syr­i­ans bom­barded the Baabda Palace with airstrikes and ar­tillery fire. Aoun fled to the French Em­bassy in Beirut, leav­ing be­hind his wife and three daugh­ters.

Au­gust 1991:

Is ex­iled to France after spend­ing months tak­ing shel­ter at the French Em­bassy in Beirut.

Dec. 12, 2003:

Aoun lob­by­ing ef­forts re­sult in U.S. pass­ing Syria Ac­count­abil­ity and Le­banese Sovereignt­y Restora­tion Act

May 7, 2005:

Re­turns to Le­banon a few weeks after Syr­ian with­drawal.

Feb. 5, 2006:

Signed a Me­moran­dum of Un­der­stand­ing with Hezbol­lah leader Sayyed Hasan Nas­ral­lah in the Mar Mikhael Church in Chiyah. Aoun joins March 8 coali­tion.

July 2006:

Sup­ports Hezbol­lah in war with Is­rael.


FPM joins Cabi­net for the first time, rep­re­sented by three min­is­ters.

May 2008:

Takes part in Doha Ac­cords which re­sult in elec­tion of Michel Sleiman as pres­i­dent.

May 2009:

FPM wins 27 seats in Par­lia­ment, par­tic­i­pates in new Cabi­net with five min­is­ters.

Dec. 10, 2009:

Vis­its Syr­ian Pres­i­dent Bashar As­sad for the first time in an ef­fort to amend ties.

Jan­uary 2011:

Aoun top­ples Hariri Cabi­net along with March 8 al­lies.


Aoun voices sup­port for Syr­ian regime fol­low­ing up­ris­ing.

Jan­uary 2014:

Aoun holds talks with for­mer Prime Min­is­ter Saad Hariri but to no re­sult.

May 2014:

Michel Sleiman’s term ends. Aoun an­nounces can­di­dacy

Jan­uary 2016:

Aoun and Geagea con­vene in his­toric rec­on­cil­i­a­tion dubbed Maarab Agree­ment. Geagea nom­i­nates Aoun for pres­i­dency.

Septem­ber 2016:

Hariri’s Chief of Staff Nader Hariri and FPM Pres­i­dent Ge­bran Bas­sil reach an un­der­stand­ing to nom­i­nate Aoun.

Hariri for­mally en­dorses Aoun for the pres­i­dency.

Oct. 20, 2016:

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