Ambassadors of Major Countries to Kick Off Tour on Key Presidential Candidates

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The ambassadors of major countries in Lebanon are expected to kicked off “soon” a series of contacts with the main and serious runners for the presidential elections.

According to al-Joumhouria newspaper the endeavors aim at inquiring the programs of the candidates.

President Michel Suleiman’s six-year term ends in May but the Constitution states that the parliament should choose a new head of state within a two-month period, which started on March 25.

The daily reported that the diplomats have set their priorities according to three elements; the importance of staging the presidential elections within the constitutional time-frame, the rejection of any constitutional amendment and the rejection of vacuum at the country’s highest post.

The report pointed out that the local rift increased between the political arch-foes, which indicates that the presidency polls might not occur on time, prompting the ambassadors to seek consensus among the rival parties to bridge the gap.

However, al-Joumhouria said that the ambassadors voiced a common concern over the incapability of the new president to cope with the local and regional developments.

The Lebanese Forces executive committee unanimously agreed to back the candidacy of LF chief Samir Geagea to the presidency.

Lebanese media have in recent weeks identified other presidential hopefuls as Kataeb party leader and ex-president Amin Gemayel, MPs Boutros Harb and Robert Ghanem, who are like Geagea members of the March 14 anti-Syria movement.

Other potential candidates are Hizbullah allies Free Patriotic Movement leader MP Michel Aoun and Marada Movement leader MP Suleiman Franjieh.

Lebanese presidents are always chosen from the Christian Maronite community.

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