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For 28th time, Lebanon parliament fails to elect president

Thirty MPs attend Wednesday session, falling well short of 86 needed to meet vote quorum

For 28th time, Lebanon parliament fails to elect president

BEIRUT, Lebanon

Lebanon's parliament on Wednesday failed – for the 28th time – to elect the country's new president amid ongoing protests sparked by a months-long sanitation crisis and paralyzing political deadlock.

Thirty MPs attended Wednesday’s assembly session, falling well short of the 86 necessary to meet a quorum for holding the vote.

Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri therefore postponed the vote to Sept. 30, when MPs will try once again – for the 29th time – to elect a new head of state.

Former President Michel Suleiman’s term ended on May 25 of last year. Since then, Lebanon’s 128-seat parliament has been unable to muster the MPs necessary to elect a new president.

Since April of last year, representatives from both Hezbollah and Michel Aoun’s “Change and Reform” bloc have boycotted successive assembly sessions, thus ensuring that the quorum is not reached.  

According to the country’s constitution, one third of the assembly – 86 MPs – must be present in order to hold a first-round vote. 

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