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Lebanon News

Parliamentary polls should be held even if under old election law: FPM

MP Alain Aoun speaks during an interview in Beirut, Friday, Dec. 10, 2010. (The Daily Star Photo)

BEIRUT: Change and Reform bloc MP Alain Aoun said that the parliamentary polls scheduled for later this year should be held even if based on the old election law.

“The priority is, of course, for holding a presidential election, but if the [presidential election] is obstructed, we must hold the parliamentary polls,” Aoun said in an interview to Al-Liwaa daily to be published Monday.

“If we were not able to issue a new electoral law, we do not mind holding the elections based on the 1960 law so that we can produce a new Parliament that can elect a president,” he said. We " reject extending Parliament’s term."

Parliament last year extended its own mandate after lawmakers failed to agree on a new electoral law to replace the old bill dating back to 1960.

The 1960 law adopts the qada as an electoral district and was used in the 2009 elections. It was rejected by several political groups from the rival March 8 and March 14 camps last year, including Hezbollah and the Lebanese Forces.

The parliamentary elections are scheduled for November this year.

Lebanon has also failed last month to elect a new president, leaving the country in the state of presidential void.

Aoun said that Lebanese forces leader Samir Geagea should support his Christian rival, MP Michel Aoun, for the presidency because “he ranks No. 1 among the Christian population.”

He said that his group was discussing the presidential election and parliamentary polls with the Future Movement and the prospects for the next phase in the country.

“However, former Prime Minister Saad Hariri is still in the 'no decision stage,' waiting for the circumstances to become more clear,” Aoun said.

Contacts were recently renewed between the Future Movement and the Free Patriotic Movement in what both groups classify as an openness policy.

Speaker Nabih Berri has called for a Parliament session on June 9 to vote for a new president, but the chances of success are dim in the absence of a political consensus between rival groups.

 

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Summary

Change and Reform bloc MP Alain Aoun said that the parliamentary polls scheduled for later this year should be held even if based on the old election law.

Parliament last year extended its own mandate after lawmakers failed to agree on a new electoral law to replace the old bill dating back to 1960 .

Aoun said that Lebanese forces leader Samir Geagea should support his Christian rival, MP Michel Aoun, for the presidency because "he ranks No. 1 among the Christian population".

He said that his group was discussing the presidential election and parliamentary polls with the Future Movement and the prospects for the next phase in the country.


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