Minister Nouhad Machnouk meets a delegation of journalists in Paris, Wednesday, July 22, 2015. (The Daily Star/Dalati Nohra, HO)
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Interior Minister Nouhad Machnouk hinted Wednesday that France was ready to seek Iran's help in ending the 14-month-old presidential vacuum during French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius' upcoming visit to Tehran."The answer will come soon if they will succeed or not as a result of Minister Fabius' visit to Tehran".He added that the outcome of Fabius' talks with Iranian officials would indicate if it is possible to separate the Lebanese presidential vacuum from developments in the region. Machnouk said if Fabius failed to get any Iranian promise to help facilitate the election of a Lebanese president, the only choice left for Lebanon is a Saudi-Iranian accord sponsored by the United States. Progressive Socialist Party leader Walid Jumblatt said it was up to Iran to facilitate the Lebanese presidential election during Fabius' visit to Tehran.Jumblatt discussed the Lebanese presidential crisis with French President Francois Hollande Monday.The March 14 coalition has accused Iran of blocking the election of a Lebanese president through Hezbollah and its March 8 allies. Lebanese Forces chief Samir Geagea again blamed Iran for the presidential vacuum.The two ministers discussed ways of supporting the Lebanese communities that are hosting the highest number of refugees, according to a statement released by Machnouk's office.
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