Franjieh: A 'life-or-death' candidate for Speaker Berri

For Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri, nominating Marada leader Suleiman Franjieh for presidency is a matter of "life or death," Nidaa al-Watan newspaper said Monday, as it reported that Berri is holding talks with France to find a settlement that would make Franjieh president.

The daily said in another report that Paris is promoting a proposal that would make Franjieh president, former Ambassador to the U.N. Nawaf Salam Prime Minister and Lebanese businessman Samir Assaf Central Bank governor.

It added that Saudi Arabia and Washington insist on a president with a recovery plan, regardless of the identity of the candidate.

But since Saudi Arabia hasn't announced that it opposes the election of Franjieh, and since the Vatican is discussing the presidential file with Hezbollah, and after the China-brokered deal between Iran and KSA, Franjieh's changes have improved, the report said.

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