Lebanon News

Lebanon's Arabic press digest - Sept. 28, 2012

Lebanon's Arabic press digest.

Following are summaries of some of the main stories in a selection of Lebanese newspapers Friday. The Daily Star cannot vouch for the accuracy of these reports.


Jumblatt's position hinders government, opposition plans, raises question on the fate of elections

The journey of a thousand miles to the electoral draft law hit snags on the first day. MP Walid Jumblatt’s position Thursday led to the obstruction of both the government and the opposition projects and raised questions about the fate of the elections in terms of whether they will take place or which law is going to be adopted.

After the government proposed a draft law based on proportional representation, MPs George Adwan, Butros Harb and Sami Gemayel submitted a proposal based on 50 districts.

This proposal was the result of efforts and negotiations with the opposition March 14 forces.

Discussions Thursday during the joint committees meeting showed, as expected, clear differences in views between the March 8 and March 14 camps.

An agreement was reached at the end of the meeting that stressed the need to vote on an electoral bill before the end of the year to make way for the government to create an appropriate atmosphere for the elections.


Government election draft law in the "morgue," PSP against "small" [districts], wants 1960 election law

Cabinet Minister Ghazi Aridi explicitly declared Thursday on behalf of National Struggle Front ministers that the Progressive Socialist Party is against the electoral law proposed by the March 14 coalition and against proportional representation.

But the PSP preference to keep the current law collides with a Hezbollah rejection and the opinion of March 14 Christians amid concerns that the 2013 elections will be cancelled.


Joint committees: 4 hours to stress divide

The country’s MPs wasted 240 minutes of their life and that of the Lebanese without any benefit.

They were acting at the meeting of the joint committees like unruly children who go to school unwillingly on the first day of the school year.

Their yelling reverberated throughout Parliament hall as Speaker Nabih Berri was not there to rein them in.

MPs did not tackle a government-proposed draft electoral law based on proportional representation and 13 districts. Instead, they spoke in generalities and spent four hours only to stress the need for to adopt a new electoral law, not that of the 1960s.


Arsal residents warn of direct Assad forces’ attack on their town

Hezbollah’s election law collides with joint committees

The Joint Committees commenced election law discussions in Parliament Thursday, where it was clear that there is no life for the Hezbollah electoral bill that was proposed by the government.

It was clear that MPs were only meeting to buy time, pending political consensus over an election law that would please everyone in light of the big differences among the proposed electoral plans.

Meanwhile, it seemed obvious that Bashar Assad’s regime does not want to isolate Lebanon from its crisis as its forces continued attacks and violations on Lebanese territory.





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