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Trump erroneously says Lebanon is ‘on the front lines’ fighting Hezbollah, a partner in the Lebanese government

President Trump lumped the Lebanese militant group Hezbollah among militants and terrorists he praised the government of Lebanon for fighting, saying during Rose Garden remarks Tuesday that the tiny Mideast nation was “on the front lines” of a shared battle against extremism. The only problem? Hezbollah is a political partner …

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Lebanese president provokes outcry with Hezbollah comment

By Dr. Haytham Mouzahem – Appeared first in Al-monitor Lebanese President Michel Aoun’s description of Hezbollah’s weapons as complementary to those of the Lebanese army provoked strong reactions on the part of the United Nations, the March 14 coalition and the Future Movement, which is headed by Lebanese Prime Minister …

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Hezbollah torn between its local and regional roles

Summary — In light of the raging regional crises, Hezbollah has been intervening outside Lebanon’s border in support of its foreign allies in Syria, Iraq and elsewhere, raising controversy inside the country about the movement’s local and regional influence. By Dr. Haytham Mouzahem for Al-monitor–Translator: Sahar Ghoussoub – On Jan. 17, the …

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Hizbullah and the Politics of Remembrance by Bashir Saade

Cambridge University Press has recently published a book entitled “Hizbullah and the Politics of Remembrance: Writing the Lebanese Nation” by Bashir Saade. Description “Born out of the Israeli occupation of the South of Lebanon, the political armed group Hizbullah is a powerful player within both Lebanon and the wider Middle …

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Israel hits Syrian military targets in Damascus

Israeli warplanes were said to have struck the military target in the Syrian capital of Damascus, while the raid on the weapons convoy occurred on the Damascus-Beirut highway, according to the reports. As with past claims of Israeli strikes, Israel did not immediately confirm or deny news of the purported …

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Just how much can Lebanon change under Aoun?

By Dr. Haytham Mouzahem* — Following the election of Gen. Michel Aoun as president of the Lebanese Republic on Oct. 31 and the appointment of Saad Hariri as prime minister on Nov. 3, the two men will face numerous challenges, starting with forming a national government. Hariri is seeking to …

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Assad aide meets with Lebanese president

BEIRUT: An aide to Syrian President Bashar Assad affirmed “deep” bilateral ties between Damascus and Beirut after meeting with Lebanese President Michel Aoun Monday. The Syrian Minister of Presidential Affairs Mansour Fadellulah Azam told reporters after the meeting with Lebanese President Michel Aoun at Baabda Palace to congratulate him on …

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Hariri ends consultations to form new Lebanese government

BEIRUT: Lebanese Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri ended consultations with parliamentary blocs Saturday following two days of talks over the formation of a new government ahead of his meeting with President Michel Aoun. “The atmosphere was positive. There was a lot of cooperation between me, Speaker Nabih Berri and his Excellency, …

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Ashura rituals stir controversy among Shiites

THE LEVANT EXCLUSIVE – By Dr. Haytham Mouzahem* — Each year, as they commemorate Ashura, the Shiites debate whether certain rituals are permissible. Some of those rituals are violent, such as Tatbir and hitting oneself with chains practices that harm one’s body and distort the revolution and objectives of Imam …

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Nasrallah congratulates Aoun on presidential post

The Levant News – Beirut – “Secretary General of Hezbollah, Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah, telephoned the new elected President of Lebanon, Michel Aoun, and congratulated him on his election as head of state. He wished him long life and good luck in his new national responsibilities.” Source: NNA

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Michel Aoun wins Lebanon presidency thanks to Hezbollah

BEIRUT: Michel Aoun has been declared Lebanon’s 13th president after gaining a simple majority in the second round of voting in Monday’s highly-anticipated presidential election in Parliament, putting an end to the country’s 2-1/2 year vacuum. The Change and Reform bloc leader and founder of the Free Patriotic Movement initially …

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Lebanese Parliament elects Michel Aoun as president

Michel Aoun

By Tom Perry and Laila Bassam for REUTERS| BEIRUT — Twenty-six years after being forced from Lebanon’s presidential palace and into exile by the Syrian army, Michel Aoun is set to be elected head of state on Monday, backed by many of his old enemies. Barring a surprise, many of …

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I will not vote for Aoun: Speaker Nabih Berri

The Daily Star — BEIRUT: Lebanon’s Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri Wednesday said he will not vote for Free Patriotic Movement founder Michel Aoun in the upcoming parliamentary session to elect a president, although he will congratulate him if he wins. “I confirm that I will take part in the session …

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Lebanon foils two ISIS-planned attacks

BEIRUT: The Lebanese Army says it has foiled two terror attacks that ISIS was planning to carry out at a tourist site as well as a crowded residential area. The army’s announcement comes on the wake of a series of suicide bombings in the country’s northeastern border village of Al-Qaa …

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Suicide bombers kill 6 in Lebanon

The Levant News — Suicide bombers killed at least six civilians and wounded more than a dozen others in the predominantly Christian village of Qaa in northeastern Lebanon early this morning. The attacks were carried out by four suicide bombers who blew themselves up near a Lebanese Customs center close …

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Hezbollah’s Shot at Permanency in Syria

The Levant News — Strafor Exclusive Analysis– Like other foreign and domestic actors, Hezbollah has seized on the Syrian civil war to improve its position in the country and the surrounding region. Stratfor has collected information from diplomatic sources and from sources close to Hezbollah to monitor and track the …

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Sanders: Positive U.S.-Israel Ties Contingent on Improving Relations With Palestinians

By Jacob Kornbluh, for Jewish Insider — In recently released transcript, Sanders says he would demand Israel halt settlement construction, adding that if Israel ‘want us to have a positive relationship, they’re going to have to improve their relationship with the Palestinians.’ Democratic U.S. presidential candidate Bernie Sanders speaks at …

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“Al Arabiya” Chops Beirut Bureau

By Magda Abu-Fadil* — Director of Media Unlimited in Lebanon — It wasn’t an April Fool’s joke. The ax fell hard today on the Beirut bureau of Saudi-owned Al Arabiya and Al Hadath satellite news channels: total closure. “My wife is pregnant and will deliver in a month,” said one …

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Saudi newspaper says Lebanon an April Fools’ joke

BEIRUT: Saudi-owned daily Asharq al-Awsat published a caricature in its Friday edition depicting the Lebanese state as an April Fools’ joke, provoking angry reactions by Lebanese citizens. The cartoon shows a Lebanese flag with the text “April Fools… the Lebanese state” written over it. Ali Hashem, a Lebanese journalist said …

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Protesters clash with Sukleen employees over trash plan

BEIRUT: Garbage will start to be dumped in the landfills of Burj Hammoud and Costa Brava Tuesday, said Agriculture Minister Akram Chehayeb, as activists and Sukleen workers clashed near the firm’s headquarters in Beirut. “Work will be finalized today in the Burj Hammoud and Costa Brava landfills and they will …

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Sukleen says undeterred by activists after Monday clash

The Daily Star BEIRUT: The waste contractor for Greater Beirut vowed Tuesday to carry on implementing the government’s latest trash plan despite protests by activists. “Does is mean if anyone is against the Lebanese government’s trash plan they have to attack Sukleen and its employees, break the equipment and raid …

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WOMEN, WATER AND PEACE: SFG Conference

The Levant News — Istanbul – Turkey: More than 50 opinion makers and policy makers from the Middle East came together to discuss linkages between women, water and peace in a conference hosted by Strategic Foresight Group (SFG) and MEF University in co-operation with Sida on 18th and 19th March …

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The Compulsion of Water Cooperation

The Levant News — By Danilo Turk and Sundeep Waslekar — Since last September when the United Nations declared water as a sustainable development goal, a number of countries have intensified efforts to promote water cooperation with their neighbouring countries. The Middle East is missing in this action. For decades, …

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