Monday, August 17, 2015

Lebanon fails again to pick new president, political deadlock continues

BEIRUT, Aug. 12 (Xinhua) -- Lebanon fails again to elect a new president because of lack of the constitutionally required two-thirds quorum as the nation's year-long politcal deadlock continues.
House Speaker Nabih Berri adjourned the session and called for a new electoral round on Sept. 2, according to a statement by his media office.
The Lebanese constitution states that a president should be elected by two third of the 128-seat parliament in the first round of voting and by a simple majority in the following rounds.
Only 34 lawmakers were present in the house on Wednesday amid boycott of the Free Patriotic Movement and Hezbollah MPs.
According to the constitution, the cabinet takes over the presidency in case of vacuum which has been continued since the six-year tenure of President Michel Suleiman ended on May 25th 2014.
A sharp division among the major political forces in the country resulted in hindering the presidential elections as neither the western backed March 14 camp nor the Syrian backed March 8 camps has the majority needed to secure a quorum at the house.
The March 14 camp is backing the candidacy of Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea, while the March 8 camp backs leader of the Free Patriotic Movement MP Michel Aoun to the first post.