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NOW

LF warns of assassination risk
ahead of Lebanon presidential vote

Samir Geagea told Free Patriotic Movement leader Michel Aoun and Future Movement chief Saad Hariri to take precautions in the coming days.

LF leader Samir Geagea. (AFP)

BEIRUT – With just days to go to the Lebanese presidential vote scheduled at the end of the month, the Lebanese Forces has warned that there is a possibility of an assassination aimed at derailing the election.

 

“There are those who are accustomed to striking democracy with violence,” LF media official Melhem Riachi said in a Sunday night interview on MTV.

 

He futher warned that an assassination is “possible”, claiming that a “large number of people would be badly affected” by the parliamentary vote scheduled on October 31 that appears set to end Lebanon’s 30-month presidential void with the election of Free Patriotic Movement leader Michel Aoun.

 

Riachi did not specify what group he believes would aim to prevent the vote, saying only that LF leader Samir Geagea called on Aoun and Future Movement chief Saad Hariri to “take precautions this week.”

 

On Sunday, Hezbollah leader Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah reiterated his support for Aoun’s candidacy and announced in a televised speech that his party’s MPs would go to the parliament to vote for him as president.

 

Nasrallah acknowledged that Hariri made a “political sacrifice” with his public backing of Aoun last week, a move seen as key for facilitating Aoun’s presidential bid, which already received the support of Geagea, a long-time Christian rival.

 

The Hezbollah leader added that he would accept Hariri becoming prime minister following Aoun’s election, saying that his party was making its own political sacrifice.

 

Nasrallah’s Shiite ally, the Amal Movement, has vociferously opposed Aoun’s election, however the party is prepared to join the upcoming parliamentary vote on the president, with the FPM’s leader appearing to have enough votes to bring him into the office he has sought for years.

 

NOW's English news desk editor Albin Szakola (@AlbinSzakola) wrote this report. Amin Nasr translated Arabic-language material. 

LF leader Samir Geagea. (AFP)

There are those who are accustomed to striking democracy with violence.