The following are a selection of stories from Lebanese newspapers that may be of interest to The Daily Star readers. The Daily Star cannot vouch for the accuracy of these reports.
Presidential race to the outside
Candidates for the presidential election have obviously moved their battle outside, examining the presidential atmosphere in Arab and Western capitals that have an influence over Lebanon.
Former minister Jean Obeid traveled to Riyadh where he met with former Prime Minister Saad Hariri. The meeting between Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil and his Russian counterpart Sergey Lavrov also addressed the presidential election, as well as other meetings taking place behind the scenes.
Hariri's envoy former MP Ghattas Khoury held separate talks on Friday with the head of the Lebanese Forces, Samir Geagea, and Kataeb Party leader Amin Gemayel to evaluate the first parliamentary vote and the possible scenarios for the upcoming round.
Aoun’s candidacy in decisive stage before Wednesday
Mutual warning to Sleiman and Rai against vacuum
Meetings are being intensively held behind the scenes to prepare for the next election round, despite fears of not securing the needed quorum for Parliament to convene.
The March 14 alliance is carrying out consultations among its factions to guarantee the success of its candidate for the presidential election, and to avert any possible vacuum at the helm of the country's most important Christian post.
Sources close to the Future Movement said that the meeting of former Prime Minister Saad Hariri’s envoy, former MP Ghattas Khoury, with Lebanese Forces leader Geagea discussed all the available options regarding the presidential election and the necessity to avoid any vacuum.
The sources stressed that the Future Movement is exerting efforts to press the staging of the presidential elections within the constitutional deadline as the March 14 coalition is “holding on to its candidate.”
Shatah’s assassination and terrorist crimes referred to the Justice Council
Aoun and Hezbollah to boycott Wednesday’s session
Parliamentary sources said that MP Michel Aoun’s Change and Reform bloc and Hezbollah’s Loyalty to The Resistance bloc have made a decision not to take part in the presidential election session next Wednesday.
The sources said 42 lawmakers from the March 8 coalition would be boycotting the session, including the Baath representatives and the Syrian Social Nationalist Party.
Only lawmakers from Speaker Nabih Berri’s Development and Liberation bloc from March 8 would attend the session aimed at electing the new president.
Lebanon triumphs for freedom against the tribunal’s terrorism
Jumbatt calls for Hariri’s comeback and for a president who manages the crisis
Lebanon witnessed wide support for the two journalists, Ibrahim al-Amin and Karma Khayyat, over the summons by the Special Tribunal for Lebanon on contempt charges.
Lawyer Antoine Korkmaz, who is suspect Mustafa Badreddine's lead defense counsel, said that the charges against the two journalists are “void” and can be refuted.
Korkmaz said that the international court's decision to summon journalists and the heads of the boards of directors in both media companies rather than the managers indicates “a lack of comprehension of the court norms followed in Lebanon.”