Lebanon tries to elect president after 17 delays

Lawmakers from the ruling anti-Syrian majority started to arrive at the Lebanese parliament Tuesday to attend a scheduled parliament session to elect a president for the country after postponing the decision 17 times.

Lebanon tries to elect president after 17 delays
So far the session has not been cancelled by Parliamentary Speaker Nabih Berri, who is also a member of the pro-Syrian opposition in the country.

Lebanon's parliament has been paralysed over the election of a new president for over 16 months. The country has had no president since pro-Syrian Emile Lahoud stepped down on November 23.

"We hope we can gather the quorum, but we cannot say anything at this time," said Minister of Telecommunications Marwan Hamadeh, who belongs to the majority.

"I hope we can give a surprise to the Lebanese and elect our president today," he said.

The pro-Western government and the opposition backed by Syria have failed to agree who should succeed Lahoud.

Lebanon's army chief, General Michel Suleiman, has emerged as the main candidate for the post.

Last Mod: 22 Nisan 2008, 14:00
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