Lebanon
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Controversy as al-Hassan Revives Debate over Civil Marriage

Divisions in Lebanon over the controversial issue of authorizing civil marriage lingers on, as Interior Minister Raya al-Hassan vowed "with Prime Minister Saad Hariri to raise the issue with religious authorities."

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Gharib 'Pleased' after Syria Visit over Refugees

State Minister for Refugee Affairs Saleh al-Gharib visited Syria on Monday at an official invitation to discuss the refugee file.

Speaking after a meeting with Syria’s Local Administration and Environment Minister Hussein Makhlouf, Gharib said he was “pleased” by Damascus' viewpoint on the refugee file.

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Report: Cabinet Facing Three-Month Grace Period

Lebanon’s newly formed government launches its first meeting on Monday after gaining the Parliament’s confidence amid local, regional and international observation for the promises it vowed to achieve in its Policy Statement, al-Joumhouria daily reported on Monday.

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Adwan: Stoking Street Tensions Leads to War, Aoun President Thanks to LF

Lebanese Forces bloc MP George Adwan noted Sunday that stoking sectarian tensions on the streets would only lead to “war,” as he stressed that “had it not been for the LF,” President Michel Aoun “would not have been elected.”

“MP Mohammed Raad’s apology over MP Nawwaf al-Moussawi’s remarks prevented attacks against each other’s icons,” Adwan said in an interview with MTV, stressing that “Bashir Gemayel is the founder and leader of the resistance we struggled in.”

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13 Injured as Ceiling Collapses on Mourners in Hermel

Thirteen people were injured Sunday when a ceiling collapsed on mourners in the Hermel area of Fissan, the National News Agency said.

The wounded, most of them women, suffered fractures and bruises and were evacuated by medics and Lebanese Red Cross crews to hospitals in the area.

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Qaouq: Saudi Normalization with Israel Encourages Israel to Attack Lebanon

Hizbullah central council member Sheikh Nabil Qaouq on Sunday accused Saudi Arabia of “normalization with Israel,” warning that such a move would “encourage Israel to attack Lebanon again.”

“Arab-Israeli ties are a treason against Palestine, and if Gulf normalization has failed Palestine, Saudi normalization with the Israeli enemy is the most treacherous, because Saudi Arabia is the country of the two holy mosques,” Qaouq said.

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Bassil Sources Say Coordination with Syria 'Inevitable'

Lebanon’s coordination with Damascus is inevitable, sources close to Foreign Minister Jebran Bassil have said.

“It is inevitable in order to make the biggest number of gains for Lebanon’s interest, to end the refugee crisis and to take part in the process of rebuilding Syria,” the sources told al-Qabas newspaper in remarks published Sunday.

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UAE Reportedly Readying to Lift Lebanon Travel Warning

The United Arab Emirate is readying to lift its travel warning for Lebanon but it is still monitoring the situation, a media report said.

Saudi Arabia had lifted its travel warning for the country on Wednesday, citing an improvement in the security situation.

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Brother of Slain PSP Supporter Injured in Fresh Choueifat Incident

Nizar Abu Faraj, a brother of slain Progressive Socialist Party supporter Alaa Abi Faraj, has been shot and wounded in Choueifat, the National News Agency said.

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Hizbullah Denies US Charges it Has Cells in Venezuela

Hizbullah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah has denied U.S. assertions that it has cells in Venezuela saying the Latin American nation "does not need them."

Nasrallah said in a speech Saturday that his Iran-backed group is in "solidarity with the political leadership and state of Venezuela against the American aggression."

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