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Report: Salameh's Term is Likely to be Renewed

The majority of Lebanon's political parties have agreed on the renewal of the term of Central Bank Governor Riad Salameh, and the debate is focusing on whether the renewal will be for three or six years, al-Akhbar daily reported on Friday.

Prime Minister Saad Hariri, Speaker Nabih Berri, MP Walid Jumblat, Hizbullah and the majority of the political forces said they support an extension of Salameh's term, unnamed sources told the daily.

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Hizbullah Organizes Border Tour for Reporters on Israel's Defense Measures

Hizbullah on Thursday organized a tour for reporters along Lebanon's southern border to brief them about the defense measures that Israel has set up in recent months.

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Hamadeh Wonders Why Cabinet Refrains from Meeting

Education Minister Marwan Hamadeh wondered in a statement on Thursday about the reasons that make the cabinet refrain from holding sessions to tackle pressing issues, while the committees meet to discuss a new electoral law for the upcoming polls, the National News Agency reported.

“Why does not the cabinet meet to tackle the people's livelihood issues and ease the country's facilities, meanwhile many committees are working and conducting communications to reach agreement over a new electoral law?" NNA quoted Hamadeh as asking.

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Report: Electoral Negotiations Almost Paralyzed

Twenty-two days separate Lebanon from the end of a one month time period, in accordance with a presidential decree issued by President Michel Aoun on April 12 that suspended the parliament, paving way for additional negotiations on a new law and avoiding another parliament term extension, al-Joumhouria daily reported on Thursday.

“However, although the measure was supposed to give momentum at all levels to formulate a solution for the electoral-political crisis, the electoral machine engines seem to have been rusted,” said the daily.

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Qassem Adheres to Proportional Law, Says Suggested Law Versions Must be Complete to Decide on

Hizbullah deputy chief Sheikh Naim Qassem reiterated adherence to the proportional representation system in a single electoral district, noting that in order for the party to decide on any other electoral format it must see the full version, al-Akhbar daily reported on Thursday.

“Proportionality in a single electoral district is the rightful and fair law that provides proper representation and reflects the popularity of the parties at the national, partisan, sectarian and family levels,” said Qassem in an interview to the daily.

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Berri: Budget Draft Referred to Committee, Wage Scale on Parliament's Agenda

Speaker Nabih Berri said on Wednesday that the long-awaited wage scale file is not included in the draft state budget that was submitted to the parliament today, but assured that it is on the agenda of the upcoming legislative session on May 15, media reports said.

“The salary scale is listed on the agenda of the parliament meeting scheduled on May 15,” Berri was quoted as saying.

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Berri Overlooks His Version of Electoral Law, Says Weighing New Ideas

Speaker Nabih Berri said a new electoral law must be agreed within the one-month time period given since President Michel Aoun used his powers to suspend the parliament, and assured that he longer adheres to the 64-64 version of a law format he proposed earlier, al-Joumhouria daily reported on Wednesday.

“In the remaining time we have to reach a new electoral law, we must not give up or be forced to extend (the parliament's term). There is still time, it is shameful for us to fail at finding a format that satisfies all segments of Lebanese society, regardless of their magnitude,” Berri told his visitors on Tuesday

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Lebanese Army Clamps Down on 'Biggest Arms Dealer'

The Lebanese army arrested the 'largest arms dealer' in Lebanon in the border town of Britel in the Bekaa region, media reports said on Wednesday.

The army staged security raids in the said area and was able arrest the dealer, who was identified as Aahed Mohsen Mazloum, they added.

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Syrian Mother Arrested for Throwing Newborn in Garbage Container

The Internal Security Forces arrested 35-year-old Syrian mother on Wednesday after dumping her newborn baby a year earlier into a waste container on al-Dora highway, the National News Agency reported Wednesday.

“On the basis of information available to the Tripoli Judicial Unit, the police were able to arrest Syrian national S.H. for throwing out on 22/6/2016 her newborn baby girl into a dumpster in al-Dora area. The baby was thrown out the same day she was born,” an ISF statement said.

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Report: International Community Says Lebanon Must Stage Timely Elections

The international community has notified the Lebanese government of the necessity to agree on a new law for the upcoming parliamentary polls in order for the country to be able to restore its “democratic rhythm,” al-Joumhouria daily reported on Wednesday.

“Prominent international community sources have communicated with the Lebanese government stressing the necessity to devise a new law or stage the parliamentary elections because the international community is annoyed with a country that endured a presidential vacuum for two years, and is unable now to draft a new election law and restore its normal democratic cycle,” said al-Joumhouria.

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