File - Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri heads a session at the Parliament in Beirut, Wednesday, May 21, 2014. (The Daily Star/Mohammad Azakir)
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The presidential vacuum, now in its third month, has taken its toll on the military establishment, prompting the Army Command to cancel this year's celebrations marking Army Day Friday.Speaker Nabih Berri, meanwhile, refuted reports that he and MP Walid Jumblatt were pushing for the extension of Parliament's term. On Army Day which falls on Aug. 1, the president usually distributes swords to graduating officers at a ceremony at the Military Academy in Fayyadieh, east of Beirut, attended by the Parliament speaker, the prime minister, Cabinet members, MPs, Army commander Gen. Jean Kahwagi, senior military and security officials and Arab and foreign ambassadors.Yet soldiers and officers will mark Army Day in their barracks and positions across the country by distributing the Order of the Day to be issued by Kahwagi Friday, the official said. Berri reiterated his call for giving priority to the election of a president, denying reports that he and Jumblatt supported the extension of Parliament's term.
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