Prime Minister Tammam Salam reviews honor guards during a ceremony at the Grand Serail in Beirut, Friday, March 21, 2014. (The Daily Star/Dalati Nohra, HO)
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U.S. President Barack Obama called Friday for the Lebanese presidential election to be held on time without any foreign interference, while stressing the importance of national unity and the disassociation policy on the conflict in Syria.Obama also underlined the importance of Lebanese national unity and strengthening the country's disassociation policy on the 3-year-old war in Syria. He pledged continued U.S. support for Lebanon, the statement said. Obama's remarks came as Sleiman Friday invited rival March 8 and March 14 leaders for a new round of National Dialogue to resume talks on the divisive issue of Hezbollah's arms as part of a national defense strategy.Both Hezbollah and the LF are still undecided on Sleiman's invitation for National Dialogue.The last Dialogue session was held in September 2012 when Sleiman proposed a national defense strategy that would allow Hezbollah to keep its weapons but under the command of the Lebanese Army, which would have exclusive authority to use force.Sleiman again criticized Hezbollah over its military role in Syria, saying the party's actions were harming Lebanon.
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