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Hind Al Soulia - Riyadh - WASHINGTON — The United States called on Lebanese politicians to end the political debate and elect a new president who would lead the country to a political and economic stability.
A statement for the State Department published on Wednesday said, “Exactly one year after the end of former President Michel Aoun’s term, Lebanon remains without a president or an empowered government”.
The Lebanese people deserve a president who can unite the nation and guide Lebanon safely through the current challenges.
“Lebanon’s divided parliamentarians have failed to elect a successor to President Aoun, putting their personal ambitions ahead of the interests of their country,” the statement added.
“Even as rising tensions along Lebanon’s southern border threaten the country’s stability and the economic crisis deepens, the Lebanese people are deprived of leadership when they need it most”, it noted.
Daily clashes between Hezbollah and the Israeli army on Lebanon’s southern border have been ongoing for almost three weeks, since Hamas on Oct. 7 launched operation Al-Aqsa Flood on Israeli soil, marking the start of a war between Israel and Hamas.
The statement warned of Lebanon’s “political paralysis”, calling the country’s parliamentarians to do their duty and elect a president who will put the country and all its people first, commit to forming a government free of corruption, and implement critical economic reforms.
It said, “Lebanon’s pursuit of the necessary reforms to secure the International Monetary Fund (IMF) program is the only way for the country to emerge from the current economic crisis.”
In September, the IMF criticized the “lack of action” by Lebanese authorities on “urgently needed reforms” to the economy that would unlock a multibillion-dollar aid package.
The Lebanese Parliament has held 12 parliamentary sessions to elect a new president, but all have failed due to a lack of political consensus on a candidate.
Lebanon has been suffering from a presidential vacuum since Oct. 31, 2022, when the term of former President Michel Aoun ended, while the country’s Parliament has not succeeded in electing a new president for Lebanon so far. — Agencies
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