A delegation of Beirut families cheer for Hariri, Tuesday, March 1, 2016. (The Daily Star/Dalati Nohra, HO)
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The election of a new president holds the key to resolving Lebanon's problems, former Prime Minister Saad Hariri said Tuesday, calling on his favored candidate, MP Sleiman Frangieh, to attend Wednesday's Parliament session to choose a successor to former President Michel Sleiman.But regardless of whether Frangieh attends or not, Wednesday's session to elect a president is doomed to fail just like the previous 35 attempts over a lack of quorum with the expected boycott by MP Michel Aoun's bloc, Hezbollah's bloc and some of their March 8 allies. Hariri also said his Future Movement would continue its dialogue with Hezbollah, despite renewed tension that soared between the two rival parties following the outbreak of a diplomatic rift with Saudi Arabia. However, Frangieh, a key figure in the Hezbollah-led March 8 coalition, rejected Hariri's call, reiterating his position that he will not attend any Parliament electoral session if Hezbollah MPs do not attend.Hariri has nominated Frangieh for the presidency in the face of MP Michel Aoun, who is backed by the Hezbollah-led March 8 coalition.Earlier in the day, meeting with a delegation of mayors and heads of municipalities in the Akkar region, Hariri said that despite the continued attempts to obstruct the vote, he is optimistic about the election of a president.Hariri defended the ongoing dialogue with Hezbollah.
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