Civil servants and public and private teachers protesting in Beirut's Riad al-Solh on Wednesday, Feb. 22, 2017. (The Daily Star/Ahmad Azakir)
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struggles with budget, more sessions aheadThe Cabinet will meet again Thursday after concluding another fruitless session to agree a draft state budget, yet Information Minister Melhem Riachi described the deliberations as "positive". Meanwhile the International Support Group for Lebanon called for the political powers to agree on the parliamentary electoral law as it reiterated support for the country. Elections are scheduled for May, yet the nature of the electoral law governing them remains the most contentious issue in politics as consensus remains elusive.Aoun vowed escalatory measures in order to realize a new vote law, as he remains staunchly opposed to holding elections under the 1960 system.Aoun wants an audit of the $11 billion extra-budgetary spending by former Prime Minister Fouad Siniora's government, while the Amal Movement is calling for the inclusion of the new wage hike in the draft budget.Ahead of Wednesday's Cabinet session, Khalil met with Aoun.
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