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Lebanon parliament to meet April 23 for presidential vote

Lebanon's parliament is to convene on April 23 to elect a new president to succeed Michel Sleiman, whose term ends on May 25, the National News Agency reported Wednesday. "Parliamentary speaker Nabih Berri has called for a session on Wednesday April 23 to elect a new president of the republic," the official news agency said. Lebanon's president, who must come from the country's Maronite Christian community, is elected by a vote in the parliament. Michel Moussa, a member of Berri's parliamentary bloc, said he hoped there would be a quorum for the session.

Lebanon parliament to meet April 23 for presidential vote

Lebanon's parliament is to convene on April 23 to elect a new president to succeed Michel Sleiman, whose term ends on May 25, the National News Agency reported Wednesday. "Parliamentary speaker Nabih Berri has called for a session on Wednesday April 23 to elect a new president of the republic," the official news agency said. Lebanon's president, who must come from the country's Maronite Christian community, is elected by a vote in the parliament. Michel Moussa, a member of Berri's parliamentary bloc, said he hoped there would be a quorum for the session.

Hezbollah chief says danger to Syria regime over

Syria's regime is no longer in danger of being toppled and the risk of the country being divided has passed, the head of Lebanon's Hezbollah said in remarks published Monday. Hassan Nasrallah's comments to the Al-Safir daily come as his Shiite movement is increasingly involved in the conflict in neighbouring Syria, where they are fighting alongside President Bashar al-Assad's forces. Nasrallah denied Hezbollah's role in Syria was unpopular in Lebanon, and said the group's recent battle in Syria's Qalamun had lessened the risks of bomb blasts back home.

Former Lebanon warlord to stand for president

Former Lebanon warlord Samir Geagea, a staunch opponent of Syria and the Shiite movement Hezbollah, will stand for the presidency in May, his Christian Lebanese Forces party said on Friday. Geagea, 61, was the only leader from the 1975-1990 civil war ever jailed, but was released under an amnesty in 2005 after Syria withdrew from Lebanon, ending 30 years of domination over its tiny neighbour. Syria ended its military and political dominance under popular Lebanese and international pressure, but it continues to exert significant influence through allies, mainly Hezbollah.

Lebanon cracks down on alleged Syria-linked al Qaeda militants

BEIRUT (Reuters) - Lebanon's military prosecutor has charged two suspected Lebanese militants with belonging to a Syrian rebel group tied to al Qaeda, judicial sources said on Friday, part of a crackdown on radical Islamists who have attacked the army this year. Sunni Muslim militants in Lebanon have targeted military positions several times, including a suicide car bomb last month on an army checkpoint that killed three soldiers.

Former Lebanon warlord to stand for president

Former Lebanon warlord Samir Geagea, a staunch opponent of Syria and the Shiite movement Hezbollah, will stand for the presidency in May, his Christian Lebanese Forces party said on Friday. Geagea, 61, was the only leader from the 1975-1990 civil war ever jailed, but was released under an amnesty in 2005 after Syria withdrew from Lebanon, ending 30 years of domination over its tiny neighbour. Syria ended its military and political dominance under popular Lebanese and international pressure, but it continues to exert significant influence through allies, mainly Hezbollah.

Hezbollah leader defends Syria intervention

BEIRUT (Reuters) - Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah on Saturday called for domestic support for his militants after a year of growing sectarian violence in Lebanon following the Shi'ite militant group's intervention in the Syrian war. "Some in Lebanon say the resistance (Hezbollah) has nothing to do with Syria," Nasrallah told supporters via a television link from a secret location in South Lebanon.

Lebanon parliament okays cabinet, ending long vacuum

Lebanon's parliament approved on Thursday a new government after lengthy negotiations over the military role of the powerful Shiite movement Hezbollah, a parliamentary source said. In a 96-4 vote with one abstention, MPs gave the cabinet headed by Prime Minister Tamam Salam their stamp of approval after two days of debate. The cabinet includes members of the bloc led by the Hezbollah and their Sunni-led rivals, the March 14 coalition.

Hariri murder trial adjourned to add new suspect

The UN-backed tribunal set up to try the killers of former Lebanese premier Rafiq Hariri has postponed the trial at least until May so a fifth suspect can be added, it said Wednesday. Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL) judges ordered earlier this month that Hassan Habib Merhi, 48, was to join the repeatedly delayed trial in absentia of four other Hezbollah members for the 2005 attack that killed Hariri and 22 others, including the suicide bomber.

Lebanon gets new government after 10-month deadlock

Lebanese Prime Minister Tammam Salam on Saturday unveiled a compromise government, capping 10 months of political wrangling during which the war in neighbouring Syria exacerbated sectarian tensions. The 24-member government, including only one woman, brings together the powerful Shiite movement Hezbollah and its allies with the Sunni-led bloc of former prime minister Saad Hariri, who back opposing sides in the Syria war.
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