Berri to call for dialogue in early October, says everyone should participate


Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri will call for dialogue in early October.

"If nothing happens, I will head the dialogue with Deputy Speaker Elias Bou Saab," Berri told al-Liwaa newspaper in remarks published Monday.

Berri had called for a seven-day dialogue, following which open presidential election sessions would be held. The blocs opposed to Hezbollah have refused to take part in talks to agree on a president before proceeding with a vote, preferring to rely on the democratic process.

"It will be like the papal election," Berri said to stress that the election will be held through open sessions with successive rounds.

In the first round of voting, the winner needs two-thirds majority, or 86 votes from the 128 members of parliament. In the second round, the winner only requires 65 ballots.

"We still have time," Berri said, adding that he has hope that a solution will be reached.

Berri confirmed that Qataris will visit Lebanon with a proposal, as Qatari envoy Abou Fahad Jassem Al-Thani will reportedly arrive in Beirut today to address Lebanon’s presidential file.

Berri called on everyone to participate in the seven-day dialogue for it to be "fruitful." "Let's wait for the parties' final decisions to act accordingly," he said.

Comments 3
Thumb gebran_sons 18 September 2023, 16:04

The only dialogue that can save Lebanon is how to liberate Lebanon from Iran's Foreign Legion (Hizbollah) occupation, a prerequisite to bringing to justice the political mafia. Anything else is a waste of time!

Missing HellAndWaite 18 September 2023, 18:12

Berri should unconditionally perform his Constitutional duty to hold a session, make a finding that quorum exists, and continue to vote until a Constitutionally determined winner is voted. Allowing quorum to be broken or using a procedure that constantly reevaluates the presence of a quorum, so to empower resisters, is either sign of his weakness as head of the parliament (in which case, why should anyone heed his call for dialog) or sign of his continuing exercise of power to the detriment of both democracy and the majority of Lebanese citizens (in which case, why should anyone heed his call for dialog).

Time for the Speaker to fulfill his duties or choose to end his career by gracefully going out to pasture. All the alternatives are uglier, and so not worth discussing ...

Thumb 18 September 2023, 19:30

Berri is the second-ranking CIA agent in Lebanon, second only to the US ambassador.