Hezbollah says it will support Franjie’s candidacy in parliamentary session to elect Lebanon’s president

Hezbollah says it will support Franjie's candidacy in parliamentary session to elect Lebanon's president

The group confirms that it will participate in the parliamentary session after criticizing the opposition-backed candidate, Jihad Azour


The parliamentary block of the Shiite party-militia Hezbollah has announced that it will participate in the session called on June 14 to try to elect the new president of Lebanon and has confirmed that it will support the leader of the Marada movement, Suleiman Franjié, after rejecting the candidacy of the opposition Jihad Azure.

Parliamentarian Iham Hamadé, a member of the Loyalty to the Resistance bloc, has confirmed that Hezbollah deputies will attend the session and has expressed his desire that Franjié win so that Lebanon achieves “stability and progress”, as reported the Lebanese television channel Al Manar, linked to the group.

Thus, he has stressed that the leader of Marada “is not a confrontational candidate” and has defended that he “has the necessary skills” to be president of the country, including his ability to address the situation of Syrian refugees in Lebanon and restore the ” normal ties” with Syria.

Hezbollah’s position was announced after the Speaker of Parliament and leader of the Shiite AMAL, Nabih Berri, revealed that he would also support Franjié. Berri himself announced this week the convening of the session for June 14, in what will be the twelfth attempt to elect the new Lebanese president.

Hezbollah parliamentarian Hasan Fadlalá affirmed last week that Azour – head of the Middle East and Central Asia department of the International Monetary Fund (IMF) – “is a candidate for confrontation and challenge” and announced that “he will not reach” the Presidency, since the party-militia “will prevent the opposition from achieving its objectives”.

Azour’s candidacy came to the fore last week thanks to the support of the Free Patriotic Movement of the last president, Michel Aoun -whose term expired on October 31-, and several opposition parties, although it is not clear if he will be able to count on the support of the majority of parliamentarians.

To be elected, the president must obtain the support of two thirds of the parliamentarians –86 of the 128– in the first round or an absolute majority in the event that more votes have to be held, as contemplated in article 49 of the Lebanese constitution.

Aoun was elected president in 2016 after almost fifty parliamentary sessions that lasted for two and a half years. Lebanon has been trapped for several years in a deep and prolonged political, economic and social crisis that has caused more than 70 percent of the population to live below the poverty line and a banking system that has been paralyzed since October 2019.

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Written by Editor TLN

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