The March 14 coalition is named after the mass anti-Syrian rally on that date in 2005 in which over one million Lebanese converged on central Beirut to demand a withdrawal of Syrian troops from Lebanon and an end to Syrian meddling in Lebanese political affairs.
The March 14 rally, held in response to a pro-Syrian demonstration on March 8, was the climax of the month-long series of rallies that followed the assassination of Rafik Hariri, a former Lebanese prime minister, in a massive truck bomb explosion on February 14, 2005.
The March 14 coalition comprises an array of political parties, movements and individuals, mainly Sunni, Christian and Druze with a few Shia. The dominant players in the March 14 coalition are Saad Hariri, son and heir of Rafik Hariri and head of Tayyar Mustaqbal (Future Movement); Walid Jumblatt, the leader of Lebanon’s Druze community and head of the Progressive Socialist Party; and Samir Geagea, leader of the Lebanese Forces.
The March 14 coalition won 72 seats in the 128-seat parliament at the May-June 2005 elections, making it the parliamentary majority, with Hariri’s Tayyar Mustaqbal winning the largest share of the coalition. It also forms the backbone of Prime Minister Fouad Siniora’s government.