Egyptian PM Sharif Ismail and Lebanon's PM Saad Hariri review honor guards in Cairo, Tuesday, March 21, 2017. (The Daily Star/Dalati Nohra, HO)
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Speaker Nabih Berri's bloc warned Tuesday of dire consequences if no agreement was reached soon on a new electoral law, saying this would amount to the country's political "suicide," in the latest plea to rivals to devise a voting system.Although government attention has now shifted to exploring a new electoral law after differences in Parliament over financing the public sector's salary scale bill and the outbreak of anti-tax and anti-corruption street protests have shelved the bill along with the 2017 draft budget, serious efforts on a voting system are unlikely to go into full gear soon due to the number of senior officials away on foreign trips.Bassil, the leader of the Free Patriotic Movement, last week unveiled a new hybrid vote law proposal in his latest initiative aimed at breaking the monthslong deadlock over a new electoral law to replace the disputed 1960 majoritarian system.As Lebanon Tuesday crossed the three-month deadline for inviting voters to prepare for the elections, Interior Minister Nouhad Machnouk said after meeting Aoun and Berri Monday that there would be a "technical delay" of the elections for a few months to prepare for the implementation of a new vote law to replace the 1960 formula used in the last elections in 2009 .
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