In this Tuesday Jan. 10, 2017 photo released by Saudi Press Agency, SPA, and made available today, President Michel Aoun of Lebanon, waves during his visit to the Lebanon embassy in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. (Saudi Press Agency via AP)
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President Michel Aoun will accept nothing short of a new vote law for the next parliamentary elections, official sources said Sunday, as Speaker Nabih Berri sounded downbeat about reaching a formula to replace the disputed 1960 majoritarian system.However, Berri accused some political factions, whom he did not name, of seeking to impose the 1960 law as a "fait accompli" to foil attempts aimed at agreeing on a new system ahead of elections scheduled for May.Berri, who has called for two legislative sessions this week to discuss and approve a 47-item agenda, said he hoped that Parliament's legislation would move into high gear following prolonged paralysis caused by the 29-month presidential vacuum that ended with Aoun's election as president on Oct. 31 .Information Minister Melhem Riachi also called for a new vote law to rectify what he termed "Christian representation" in the next Parliament.Rival factions are seeking to reconcile two different hybrid electoral laws.One proposal was made by Berri's bloc, which calls for half of Parliament's 128 members to be elected on the basis of proportional representation and the other half on the current 1960 winner-take-all system.
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