Lebanon has often been a battleground for influence between Saudi Arabia and Iran.
One Lebanese website listed second generation politicians running to replace their fathers, then posted pictures of their toddler children, captioned- “Your parliament members for 2025”.
The war in Syria seems to have complicated the balance of power in Syria.
“Contrary to what many are accustomed to think, one thing limiting the possibility of change through the democratic process in Lebanon is not the existing sectarian electoral or political system”.
Lebanon has periodically been an arena for the intense regional competition between Iran and.
Nevertheless, the confessional political system in Lebanon remains the same: parliament seats are divided evenly between Muslims and Christians, the president must always be a Maronite, the prime minister a Sunni and the speaker of parliament a Shiite. Hariri’s government is backed by the West and Saudi Arabia.
The system of polling stations in Lebanon is unique.
Hezbollah is the only group that kept its weapons after the end of Lebanon’s civil war. Most inhabitants of the Middle East-and certainly most Lebanese-are more interested in improving policy (and making government more effective) than in pledging loyalty to one repressive autocrat over another.
The country has mostly weathered the regional storm caused by seven years of war in neighbouring Syria, but it has gone through several internal crises since the last election. Out of 128 parliamentary seats, reliable sources indicate that only 38 are up for competition in the elections.
Experts differed on who would benefit the most from a low turnout, as scenarios vary across the country’s 15 districts, whose size and sectarian fabric are all different.
In theory, it should allow candidates beyond traditional power players to win seats.
These thresholds vary district by district, so overall participation rates won’t paint a clear picture of establishment voters as differentiated from newcomers. Of the almost 600 candidates in the race, 84 were women, up from a mere dozen in 2009 (the outgoing parliament has only four female members).
It is remarkable that Lebanon’s citizens vote on the parliamentary elections for the first time since 2009, after the acting parliament has prolonged the term three times by itself under the guise of a political instability.
President Michel Aoun appeared on television late in the afternoon to urge people to vote.
Frantic last-minute calls from leaders across the Lebanese political spectrum appeared to energise voter turnout on Sunday from strikingly low levels to nearly 50 per cent in the country’s first election since 2009.
“This means that I voted, and I’m happy that I voted and took part in change”, said Guy Farah, a 36-year-old salesman showing the ink stain on his thumb as he walked out of a Beirut polling station.
That has fueled already deep disillusionment in a country where the same dynasties have held political power for decades and are widely seen as self-serving and corrupt.
Lebanon has 3.8 million registered voters and more than 700,000 voters will be casting their ballots for the first time. Voters will select one checklist of allied candidates, in addition to a most popular candidate from amongst them. “That will make a difference in the governance of Lebanon”.
We hope we will open a new era.
Kortam took to social media with her WeExist campaign, touring refugee camps and speaking on TV “so they get ready to deal with us after the elections”, as she put it on her Twitter account. If larger independent coalitions, such as Kilna Watani or Sabaa, gain a seat or two, it will be an impressive feat.
That has cracked open the door for extra outsiders to discipline the elections, hard political titans who’ve lengthy dominated the nation based mostly on a sectarian and household patronage system.