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Tensions build up between Miqati, Fayyad over energy files withdrawal

Tensions have built up between caretaker Prime Minister Najib Miqati and caretaker Energy Minister Walid Fayyad over two electricity files that the latter had asked to withdraw from a Cabinet session's agenda on Friday.

Miqati said in a statement Tuesday that Fayyad must be "experiencing a real crisis within his ministry that makes him do something and its opposite."

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Sayyed after meeting Aoun: Presidency powers can't be ceded to caretaker govt.

MP Jamil al-Sayyed held talks Tuesday at the Baabda Palace with President Michel Aoun.

“The continuation of the caretaker government until the presidential elections is a conspiracy against the people, the President and the presidential tenure,” Sayyed said after the meeting.

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Saudi FM: Change and Hizbullah's issue are in the hands of the Lebanese

Saudi Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan on Tuesday noted that after Lebanon’s parliamentary elections, the issue of “change” and “the issue of Hizbullah” are “in the hands of the Lebanese.”

“The Lebanese elections might be a good step, but it is too early to say that,” the Minister said in Davos.

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Arslan reacts after Bukhari hails 'fall of betrayal and treason icons'

Lebanese Democratic Party leader Talal Arslan on Tuesday decried “a black point in the history of Saudi diplomacy,” in response to remarks by Saudi Ambassador to Lebanon Walid Bukhari about the pro-Syria politicians who lost their seats in the latest parliamentary elections.

“We have always been accustomed to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia as a backer of Lebanon and all Lebanese throughout history, and no matter how much circumstances changed, it maintained its cordial rhetoric toward us,” Arslan said in a statement.

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Dollar exchange rate crosses LBP 34,000 on black market

The dollar exchange rate crossed LBP 34,000 on the black market on Tuesday, marking a new record high in the country’s history.

The dollar was selling for LBP 34,100 at 3:30 pm according to exchange rate apps.

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Nine Lebanese banks to withdraw from Cyprus

Nine Lebanese banks are shutting down their operations on the Mediterranean island of Cyprus, a representative of the Cyprus Central Bank said on Tuesday.

The banks will close their branches on the island within a period of time that will allow them to wind down operations in an orderly fashion, said the representative, who spoke to the Associated Press on condition of anonymity because he's not allowed to discuss the matter publicly.

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Report: At least 60 MPs will re-elect Berri and quorum is 'guaranteed'

Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri will call next week for a session to elect a new Speaker, sources have said.

The sources told al-Liwaa newspaper, in remarks published Tuesday, that the session will be on Tuesday or Thursday and that the quorum is almost guaranteed.

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Doctors, hospitals announce two-day strike starting Thursday

Pharmacists protested on Tuesday in front of the Ministry of Health as they urged authorities to issue a new pricelist for medicines.

Pharmacists slammed the smuggling of medicines that could be falsified. They said the citizens are forced to purchase these smuggled medicines as they are missing in pharmacies.

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Young Lebanese voters shake grip of traditional parties 

Lebanese law student Charbel Chaaya spent the election campaign distributing flyers in Beirut and trying to convince his parents to vote for independents to shake the grip of established parties.

The 21-year-old activist is one of many young voters who went against their parents' political views, and helped propel at least 13 independents to parliament last week for the first time in decades.

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Atiyeh says ready to assume deputy speaker post, voices support for Berri

MP Sajih Atiyeh of Akkar, who is backed by ex-deputy PM Issam Fares, announced Monday that he is willing to assume the deputy parliament speaker post if nominated, as he voiced support for the re-election of Speaker Nabih Berri to his post.

“I know that he resembles us. He is the father of the deprived and we hail from a deprived region. Therefore this visit was to discuss the region’s affairs in particular,” Atiyeh said after meeting Berri in Ain el-Tineh, adding that he prides himself in a “patriotic figure” like Berri.

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