The following are a selection of stories from Lebanese newspapers that may be of interest to Daily Star readers. The Daily Star cannot vouch for the accuracy of these reports.
Long night ended in an agreement on the terms of the pay scale
The joint parliamentary committees have completed reviewing the terms for the salary scale funding and began discussing a payment schedule after it agreed on the general principles.
However, the committees decided to address the technical details later after it finalized a plan related to the funding sources and suspended another related to the VAT.
Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri is expected to call the General Committee for a meeting Saturday to discuss the VAT issue.
Geagea: This is my offer to Hezbollah
Boycotters will pay the price ... I’m six votes short
Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea denied having intentions to “embarrass” former Prime Minister Saad Hariri by nominating himself for the presidency.
Geagea said that in the event he was elected president he will call for partnership with Hezbollah “in building a true state that would be solely responsible for safeguarding all its citizens with weapons solely controlled by the Lebanese Army.”
Geagea calculates the number of electoral votes, saying: "If Parliament convened with a two-third quorum present, it will be difficult in the first round for any candidate to obtain the majority required. In the second session, victory requires 65 votes, and I believe I have a chance, particularly since I can secure 59 votes from March 14 MPs. This means I’m only six votes short. And, in principle, obtaining them is not impossible.”
Al-Liwaa reveals outcome of Ibrahim’s meeting with Palestinian factions’ delegation
Palestinian sources told Al-Liwaa that a meeting Thursday between a delegation representing Palestinian factions and General Security head Maj. Gen. Abbas Ibrahim led to practical results that are expected to be implemented in the next few hours.
The sources said both sides agreed to exploit the “Palestinian Initiative” to regulate relations with the Lebanese side by speeding up the formation of a committee to pursue implementation of the terms of the initiative.
This committee will comprise of five members from the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) and five from the Alliance of Palestinian Forces as well as a representative of the Islamic forces and another from Ansar Allah.
Pay scale standoff ignites confrontation with banks
Security plan expands to the Bekaa
While the UCC front calmed down, the bank front opened with a new confrontation erupting in the banking sector, which rejected proposed taxes to finance a salary raise for the public sector.
An-Nahar has learned that Speaker Nabih Berri will meet Friday with a delegation from the banking sector, while Central Bank Governor has reportedly headed to Paris on a private visit.
Meanwhile, An-Nahar has learned that head of the Future parliamentary bloc, Fouad Siniora, accompanied by Mr. Nader Hariri, headed Thursday to Riyadh to discuss the presidential election with former PM Saad Hariri.
French President Francois Hollande's Adviser for Middle Eastern Affairs Emmanuel Bonn stressed following a meeting with Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil that his country will not interfere in the Lebanese presidential election.
France “does not form a government (in Lebanon) and does not make a president and does not interfere in names, but rather we care about the president’s political platform and his political outlook,” Bonn said.
Hezbollah broke the equation, but the threat still exists
Hezbollah’s partial response to the Israeli air raid on a party base in the Bekaa border town of Janta and Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah admitting to the attack on an Israeli army patrol has broken an equation desired by Israel with regards to Lebanon and Hezbollah.
Yet, this does not mean that the Israeli threat has gone away after Hezbollah’s response. In parallel to Hezbollah's success there is an Israeli desire to put the equation on the right track again.