A picture of Lebanon's Grand Serail. (The Daily Star/Mohamad Azakir)
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Even if President Michel Aoun's image as the "Father of All" has been tainted by his son-in-law calling the speaker of Parliament a "thug," elections are still likely to go ahead, despite Cabinet's fate hanging in the balance, analysts said Tuesday. With sectarian rhetoric in recent days escalating to a point reminiscent of Lebanon's bloody 15-year Civil War, the focus has quickly shifted to the May 6 parliamentary elections – the first in over nine years. The argument between Aoun and Berri quickly trickled down to their top aides – Bassil and Finance Minister Ali Hasan Khalil.The key question is whether Khalil and Bassil will sit at the same table for weekly Cabinet meetings – something that remains to be seen.Lebanon officially entered election mode after Aoun signed a decree calling on voters to prepare for elections, and with that came increased tensions. Now, with Berri's side accusing Bassil of trying to postpone elections, the waiting game will continue.
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