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FPM Slams Extension for Qahwaji, Vows No Silence over 'Insistence on Violating Laws'

The Free Patriotic Movement on Thursday said it “strongly condemns” a decision by Defense Minister Samir Moqbel to postpone the retirement of Army chief General Jean Qahwaji, vowing that it will not “remain silent” over “the insistence on violating the laws.”

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Egypt Ambassador: Hariri Exerting Great Effort to End Presidential Vacancy

Egyptian Ambassador to Lebanon Nazih Naggari held talks Thursday with al-Mustaqbal Movement leader ex-PM Saad Hariri and noted that the former premier is “exerting a great effort to end the presidential vacancy.”

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Moqbel to Extend Term of Army Commander

Defense Minister Samir Moqbel announced on Thursday that he will sign a decision to extend the term of Army Commander Jean Qahwaji today and another decision to extend the term of Chief of Staff Maj. Gen. Walid Salman on Friday.

“We will not accept vacuum in the military institution. I will sign a decision today to extend the term of Qahwaji since the cabinet failed to convene Thursday. I have summoned Major General Salman and asked him to exercise his duties as chief of staff,” said Moqbel in a press conference.

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Army Shells Militants in Arsal Outskirts

The Lebanese army shelled the positions of militant groups in the outskirts of the northeastern town of Arsal on Thursday, the state-run National News Agency reported.

The army targeted the movements of militants in Wadi al-Khayl, al-Zamrani and Wadi al-Debb in the outskirts, added NNA.

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Report: FPM Drops Street Rallies Pending Hariri's Endeavors on Presidency

The Free Patriotic Movement has postponed the streets rallies that it vowed to kick off after the parliamentary meeting on September 28 dedicated for the election of a president, until al-Mustaqbal Movement chief ex-PM Saad Hariri ends his consultations with political parties and the FPM's anticipations that it could bring Aoun to the post of presidency, the pan-Arab al-Hayat daily reported on Thursday.

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Report: Hizbullah and Iran 'Hold all the Cards' to the Presidency

A solution to Lebanon's presidential impasse is not in the hands of al-Mustaqbal Movement chief ex-PM Saad Hariri as the latest political activities on the ground are trying to demonstrate, but in the hands of Hizbullah and Iran, al-Joumhouria daily reported on Thursday.

An official in the March 14 alliance, said it is unlikely for founder of the Free Patriotic Movement MP Michel Aoun to become president, and affirmed that the “cards are in the hands of Hizbullah and Iran which is keeping it among its stack of cards in Yemen and Iraq in order to improve its negotiations with the new American administration,” the official told the daily.

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Landmine Wounds Three Farmers near Israel Border

Three Lebanese farmers were wounded Wednesday when a landmine exploded near the border fence that separates south Lebanon from Israel's Metulla area.

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Jumblat Discusses Developments with Hariri at Center House

Progressive Socialist Party leader MP Walid Jumblat held talks Wednesday evening at the Center House with al-Mustaqbal Movement leader ex-PM Saad Hariri.

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Mashnouq: Security under Control, Serious Drive to End Vacuum

Interior Minister Nouhad al-Mashnouq reassured Wednesday that the security situation is “under control,” while noting that there are serious efforts to put an end to the presidential vacuum that has been running since May 2014.

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Berri Reiterates Call for 'Agreement on Several Issues'

Speaker Nabih Berri reiterated Wednesday that “an agreement over several issues is the gateway to reaching a comprehensive solution that begins with the presidency.”

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