Members of MP Tammam Salam's government attend a meeting of Parliament deliberating on the Cabinet's policy statement ahead of a vote of confidence Wednesday, Mrach 19, 2014. (The Daily Star/Mohammad Azakir)
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The Lebanese Parliament Wednesday ended the first day of deliberations over Cabinet's policy statement, with the government almost certain to win a sweeping majority vote of confidence in the upcoming legislative session.Fourteen lawmakers gave statements during the first half of the session, offering their parliamentary bloc's viewpoint on the ministerial statement. Speaker Nabih Berri called last week for two sessions starting Wednesday to debate the Cabinet's policy statement ahead of a vote of confidence for the government to effectively begin its work. MPs quoted the speaker as saying that Thursday's meeting would require lawmakers to vote, deciding the fate of Salam's 24-member Cabinet. Before adjourning the first day of discussions, Berri said a number of lawmakers were scheduled to speak at Thursday's session at 10:30 a.m., including Hezbollah MP Mohammad Raad, Future MP Fouad Siniora and Kataeb MP Sami Gemayel. At the beginning of Wednesday's legislative session, Prime Minister Tammam Salam read his Cabinet's policy statement, saying that the document exemplified the meaning of a "national interest" government.As expected, Lebanese Forces MPs gave the Cabinet a vote of no confidence.
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