Hariri, Kerry Stress Need to Elect President ‘as Soon as Possible’


Head of the Mustaqbal Movement MP Saad Hariri held talks on Thursday morning with United States Secretary of State John Kerry in the French capital Paris to discuss the latest Lebanese and regional developments.

The former premier’s media office stated that the two officials stressed the need to end the vacuum in the presidency and “exert all possible efforts to elect a new head of state as soon as possible.”

They also tackled measures to ensure Lebanon’s stability and bolster the security and military forces.

In addition, Hariri and Kerry focused on the case of Syrian refugees in Lebanon and the burden they have on the country.

On Tuesday, the former prime minister had held talks in Paris with French Foreign Minister Laurent Fabius and former President Michel Suleiman.

Kerry had paid a brief visit to Lebanon on June 4 during which he held talks with Speaker Nabih Berri, Prime Minister Tammam Salam, and Maronite Patriarch Beshara al-Rahi.

He highlighted during his trip the negative impact the Syrian crisis is having on Lebanon, urging Hizbullah, Iran, and Russia to help end the war in the country.

He also voiced his concern over the “deeply troubling” political stalemate in Lebanon given the political powers’ failure to elect a new president.

Suleiman’s six-year term ended in May with lawmakers failing to elect his successor due to disputes between the rival March 8 and 14 camps.

Seven presidential elections sessions were held without a new head of state being elected.

The eighth session is scheduled for July 2.


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