Rival Sides Negotiate Parliament Term Extension Amid Security Issues, Conditions Set by Aoun

إقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية W460

Rival parties are holding consultations on the duration of the extension of parliament's mandate at a time when security incidents throughout the country are threatening to spiral out of control and amid conditions set by Free Patriotic Movement leader Michel Aoun.

Zahle MP Nicolas Fattoush, who is also a caretaker minister, proposed on Wednesday a draft-law to extend the legislature's term for two years until June 20, 2015.

But deadly gunbattles between rival neighborhoods in the northern city of Tripoli and another security incident in the southern coastal city of Sidon on Wednesday complicated the crisis on the parliamentary elections and the extension saga.

Fattoush has argued that a two-year extension was aimed at avoiding a vacuum, which would be worsened by the deteriorating security situation, saying requests by the March 14 alliance for a duration of only six months were not practical.

The parliament’s term expires on June 20. But the rival parties have so far failed to agree on a new vote law as an alternative to the 1960 law that was used in the 2009 elections.

Aoun, who is part of the Hizbullah-led March 8 alliance, opposes the extension of the legislature's term over fears that it would lead to extending the term of President Michel Suleiman, which ends in May next year, An Nahar daily reported.

It said Aoun has pressured his allies to make pledges not to extend the term of Suleiman and Army chief Gen. Jean Qahwaji.

The newspaper said that the president informed Speaker Nabih Berri's political aide Ali Hassan Khalil, who is also a caretaker minister, that he rejects a long-term extension.

He reiterated that he backs a short extension that would allow the elections to take place after a deal on a new law.

PM-designate Tammam Salam briefed Suleiman on Thursday on the consultations held between the different parties, said a statement released by the presidential palace.

He also discussed with the president the debate on the electoral law, it said.

Comments 9
Thumb sophia_angle 23 May 2013, 09:32


Missing rudy 23 May 2013, 15:02

a comb over has never been sexier

Missing rudy 23 May 2013, 15:02

and im going to keep trying naharnet!

your censorship criteria is absurd

Missing rudy 23 May 2013, 11:59

should i try one more time naharnet? or will you delete it again?

Thumb sophia_angle 23 May 2013, 15:34

Words are character's reflections..mrs.rudy if insulting other people increases ur manhood in a way...be my guest ;)

General your the best!

Missing rudy 23 May 2013, 16:31

im sorry if a little sarcasm hurts your feelings

isnt freedom of speech grand? :)

Thumb mckinl 23 May 2013, 12:53

Really ...

Suleiman needs to go ... He does not represent the Christian point of view. The "Dear General" is nothing more than a flunky of NATO and foreign business interests.

Thumb beiruti 23 May 2013, 17:00

Aaron David Miller, in a recent article, the Myth of the Arab State published in "The National Interest" refers to Lebanon as having been a "non-state" for many years. He wrote, "It possesses the trappings of statehood, but its central government can't control the forces of violence within Lebanese society (Tripoli, Hezbollah), lacks the confidence of all its sectarian groups (Shiites), and has failed to maintain sovereignty over its own territory. The hollowing out of Lebanon is likely to contiue even if Hezbollah's influence is reduced with the travails of its Syrian backer."

Thumb beiruti 23 May 2013, 17:42

Look at this guy in the picture at the head of this article. Professing to be the last great hope for confessional Christian parties, he is the sole political facilitator for Hezbollah, which is anathema to confessional Christian parties.
The existence of Hezbollah is the primary cause for Lebanon being a "non-state". As for the "trappings of statehood", that's what happens when factions agree to "continue the mandate" of a Parliament, that never meets and whose Members' terms have expired because the political class can't agree on a proper rigging of the laws so that one side or the other can be assured of winning the next election. The people of Lebanon who allow this condition in their political class (reference the picture at the head of this article) to persist are the ones who are accelerating the hollowing out of the Lebanese state.