FPM founder Michel Aoun receives LF leader Samir Geagea in Rabieh, Tuesday, June 2, 2015. (The Daily Star/Charbel Nakhoul, HO)
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Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea endorsed the presidential candidacy of his war time rival Michel Aoun Monday, forfeiting his own presidential run and offering a possible exit to the 20-month void at the country's top post which has left the government in shambles.The initiative was opposed to by both Aoun, the founder of the Free Patriotic Movement which is backed by Hezbollah, and Geagea's Lebanese Forces.But Geagea still faces an uphill battle to convince his March 14 allies, namely the Future Movement and Kataeb Party, to get on board with the endorsement. Until the announcement of Hariri's initiative to elect Frangieh, Geagea had been the March 14 coalition's official presidential candidate, which is reserved for a Maronite Christian.Geagea, as a militia leader, and Aoun, as Lebanon's army chief, fought fierce battles between each other during the final years of the war.Geagea and Aoun announced a declaration of intent in June 2015 to state their parties' common vision on what best serves Lebanon's Christians.
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