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Lebanon parliament extends mandate amid insecurity

Lebanese demonstrators block a street leading to the parliament building in an attempt to prevent MPs from voting for the law to extend their mandates, in Beirut on November 5, 2014Lebanon’s parliament voted Wednesday to extend its mandate until 2017, postponing elections again amid political stalemate and insecurity tied to the conflict in neighbouring Syria. The decision came the day after Al-Qaeda’s Syrian affiliate threatened to carry out new attacks in Lebanon against the Shiite Hezbollah movement which is fighting in Syria to bolster President Bashar al-Assad. “The parliament voted by 95 votes out of 97 members present to extend its mandate until June 20, 2017,” a parliamentary source told AFP. Parliamentary elections were originally scheduled for the middle of 2013, but MPs approved a 17-month extension of their mandate on May 31, 2013.

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