Lebanese parliament OKs cabinet that gives Hizbullah veto power

The Lebanese parliament overwhelmingly approved a national unity cabinet Tuesday that gives Hizbullah a more powerful say in the running of the country. The cabinet joins Hizbullah and its allies with supporters of Western-backed Prime Minister Fuad Saniora. For nearly two years, Saniora's government had rejected the group's demands for veto power in the cabinet but compromised after a wave of violence between rival factions in May. Hizbullah and its allies have 11 out of 30 seats in the cabinet, enabling them to have veto power over major decisions, keep their weapons and prevent the government from moving too close to the United States. It took the two sides about 45 days of negotiations to name the new cabinet and another three weeks to approve its policy platform, which in the end implicitly allowed Hizbullah to remain armed.