Bassil speaks during an interview with The Daily Star in Bayada, Tuesday, Jan. 9, 2018. (The Daily Star/Hasan Shaaban)
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A ministerial committee tasked with implementing a new electoral law is set to meet Monday, but is unlikely to endorse a proposal to extend the deadline for Lebanese expatriates to register to vote in the upcoming elections due to enduring differences between rival factions, parliamentary and political sources said Sunday. "I don't think the committee will adopt [Foreign] Minister [Gebran] Bassil's proposal to extend the expatriate voter registration's deadline because differences still persist between various parties over this issue," Future Movement MP Atef Majdalani said.Berri, backed by Hezbollah; MP Walid Jumblatt's bloc; the Marada Movement; and Minister for the Displaced Talal Arslan staunchly opposed the bill, saying that any amendments to the electoral law would open the door for other amendments and would therefore put parliamentary elections, slated for May 6, into jeopardy.Finance Minister Ali Hasan Khalil, a top political aide to Berri, has said that Bassil's proposal to amend the electoral law would not pass in Parliament, even if it were endorsed by the Cabinet.
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