How Aoun’s Presidency Is Already Realigning Lebanon’s Fractious Politics

Lebanese President Michel Aoun during an official reception, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Jan. 10, 2017 (Saudi Press Agency photo via AP)
Lebanese President Michel Aoun during an official reception, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Jan. 10, 2017 (Saudi Press Agency photo via AP)

On Oct. 31, Michel Aoun, a former Lebanese army general, was elected president of Lebanon, ending a 29-month-long crisis in which the country had no president, its institutions were paralyzed, and its economy risked collapse. After being voted into office with the support of 83 lawmakers—well over the 65 needed to win—the Christian leader and founder of the Free Patriotic Movement was shown smiling in his seat in televised broadcasts of parliament, as fireworks crackled across Beirut in celebration. But the significance of Aoun’s election was not limited to the seat of the presidency. It marked the start of a […]

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