Op-Ed: Why has Lebanon faced a prolonged presidential vacuum?

By Joe Macaron, 10 July 2023
Flag of Lebanon (photo credit: pixabay)
Flag of Lebanon (photo credit: pixabay)
It has been nearly eight months since the presidential vacuum began in Lebanon, with 12 parliamentary voting sessions held so far and still no end in sight for a political stalemate that is halting much-needed socio-economic reforms in a country grappling with an unprecedented financial crisis. Regional and international attempts at mediation have not yet been able to overcome internal divisions among the Lebanese political class. [...] For the past few months, France has endorsed a deal that would bring former minister Suleiman Frangieh to the presidency and Nawaf Salam to the premiership. [...] The internal challenge to this deal is that the main parliamentary blocs have not endorsed Frangieh’s candidacy and have sought an alternative. [...] Lebanese politicians continue to look for external indications which could define the presidential election, first the Saudi-Iranian rapprochement and now a potential US-Iran nuclear deal, instead of directly addressing their own divisions without international mediation. However, a consensus candidate has yet to emerge. Lebanese politics remain in the phase of convincing Hezbollah to give up on Frangieh, and unless that is achieved it will be challenging to overcome the current deadlock.
Read the full article here: The New Arab


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