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UN suspends USD aid to Syrian refugees in Lebanon after uproar

The U.N. on Saturday announced the suspension of a decision to disburse U.S. dollar cash assistance to Syrian refugees in Lebanon, after the move created an uproar in the country.

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Geagea wants to 'see Bassil in parliament' voting for Azour before believing

Free Patriotic Movement chief Jebran Bassil has endorsed the presidential nomination of ex-minister Jihad Azour, but “there is still confusion within the FPM that is casting doubt on the entire matter,” Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea said.

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Mikati hits back at FPM over Cabinet session

Caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati on Friday snapped back at the Free Patriotic Movement after its chief Jebran Bassil strongly criticized him over the issue of holding cabinet sessions amid the ongoing presidential vacuum.

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Geagea, Bassil slam 'unconstitutional' and 'provocative' cabinet session

Lebanese Force chief Samir Geagea on Friday described a Cabinet meeting that got underway at 3:00 pm as “unconstitutional,” noting that “the majority of the items on its agenda are not urgent.”

Free Patriotic Movement chief Jebran Bassil for his part lashed out at caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati, calling him the head of a “caretaker government that lacks complete legitimacy, constitutionalism and respect for the National Pact.”

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FPM says opposition showing positivity as Azour chances reportedly surge

The Free Patriotic Movement said Friday that the opposition is showing "positivity" regarding presidential candidates and that this positivity "will soon apply to the approach and program."

"We have been showing positivity since last July," the FPM said in a statement. "What has changed is the positivity that the opposition forces have started to show."

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Mikati expects president before June 15, Bassil ready to intensify talks

Caretaker Prime Minister Najib Mikati is stressing in his meetings with visitors that a new president will be elected before June 15, without revealing if he has information that supports his expectation, Asharq al-Awsat newspaper reported on Friday.

An opposition source meanwhile told the daily that negotiations between the Lebanese Forces, the Kataeb Party and the Free Patriotic Movement will enter a “new stage.”

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Opposition, Change and independent MPs urge end to Hezbollah arms

The MPs of the Lebanese Forces, the Kataeb Party and the Tajaddod bloc in addition to Change MPs Waddah al-Sadek, Mark Daou and Michel Doueihi on Friday slammed Hezbollah’s latest military drill, saying it “provoked the majority of the Lebanese and the content of the Jeddah Arab Summit declaration.”

“Through this drill, it wanted to tell the Lebanese, Arabs and the world that its sovereignty is above that of the Lebanese state, that the state has no sovereignty over its territory, and that there can be no decision in Lebanon that defies its will and the will of the regional axis it belongs to,” the MPs said in a statement.

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US says refugees can't return now, won't interfere in presidential file

The Syrian refugees cannot return to their country from Lebanon due to the inappropriate circumstances and the absence of a political solution, U.S. State Department Arabic Spokesperson Sam Werberg said.

The return decision must be in the hands of the refugees, Werberg added, in remarks to Lebanon’s al-Jadeed television.

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World Bank OKs $300 mn to support vulnerable Lebanese

The World Bank approved a $300 million additional financing to Lebanon's poor, providing cash payments to help families struggling through the country's historic economic meltdown, institution said in a statement Friday.

The new financing comes two years after the World Bank approved a $246 million loan to Lebanon to provide emergency cash assistance to hundreds of thousands in the tiny Mediterranean nation of 6 million people.

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Nasrallah calls for presidential dialogue without 'preconditions'

Hezbollah chief Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah on Thursday noted that “further dialogue and contacts” are required in the presidential file.

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