Talks among Lebanese leaders to agree on president gain momentum

By
September 27, 2007 18:42

 
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Rival Lebanese political leaders stepped up their dialogue Thursday trying to reach an agreement on a new president and prevent the country from sliding deeper into a crisis that threatens its unity. The discussions between the pro-government and opposition camps began immediately after Parliament failed Tuesday to elect a president because of a boycott by the Hizbullah-led opposition. Since then, the leader of the pro-government majority in Parliament, Saad Hariri, has met three times with Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri, who is aligned with the opposition - their first meetings in months. On Thursday, Hariri held talks with Cardinal Nasrallah Sfeir, head of the influential Maronite Catholic Church. Under Lebanon's sectarian-based political system, the president traditionally hails from the Maronite community, which makes up the largest sect among the minority Christians.

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