Published: Tue, May 08, 2018
World | By Camille Rivera

Hezbollah's Nasrallah says Lebanon results are "victory" for the resistance

Hezbollah's Nasrallah says Lebanon results are

The general election for Lebanon's 128-member parliament, Lebanon's first parliamentary elections in nine years, was held on Sunday, with over 500 candidates vying for seats.

Election law makes it illegal to publish forecasts of how the parties will perform before polls close. "If you want change, you should exercise your right" to vote, he said in a message published on Twitter at the same time.

Aoun has since repaired his relations with Syria and created a tactical alliance with Hezbollah, seeing that due to their arms, influence and numerical supremacy, they were the only ones capable of making him president - an ambition he has harbored since the 1980s.

Nouhad Machnouk announced the results late Monday, saying that they do not include the northern Akkar region, where counting is still underway.

However, turnout among the 3.6 million eligible voters was only 49.2% on Sunday, down from 54% nine years ago.

First parliamentary elections in almost a decade introduced electoral law with proportional representation.

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"These leaders are destroying homes, not building them", said Ahmad Khashouq, 43, a private security guard in Beirut.

Fights broke out in and around polling stations around the country. In the Choueifat district, a crowd inside a station accused the station supervisor of illegal voting practices and smashed a ballot box, spilling its contents across the floor. The army ordered the media inside to turn off their cameras.

The Lebanese Association for Democratic Elections reported over 7,000 polling violations in Sunday's elections. Lebanon's prime minister has to be a Sunni under its sectarian power sharing system. "I've come to support civil society because there's nobody else I like in this country, but I doubt they will win", she said.

"This country is really bipolar", said Brjawi.

The Iran-backed Hezbollah movement and its political allies appear to be on course, according to preliminary results and pollsters' calculations, to win half the seats in Lebanon's parliament from Sunday's election - the country's first parliamentary poll in nearly a decade.

"This shows Lebanon's democracy and the importance of democracy".

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What happened in Lebanon's elections is also an extension to what has been taking place in Syria, Iraq and Yemen: The advancement of Iran-backed groups.

"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.

"During the last two or three years, it was a mess - no decision, no new law, no political life", he told Xinhua, referring to the political deadlock within the government that failed to address the daily problems.

A woman shows her ink-stained finger after casting her vote during the parliamentary election in Beirut, Lebanon, May 6, 2018. "Order is nice", he quipped. These seats are now mostly occupied by his Hezbollah opponents, and by figures closely associated with the Syrian regime - namely with Bashar Assad. But shortly after returning to Beirut, he withdrew his resignation and mended broken fences with Hezbollah. Outside polling stations, Hezbollah supporters displayed a replica of the voting ballot on a big board and explained to voters which among the color-coded lists was theirs and how to vote for it. "At least we know the current MPs", he said.

The election marks the first vote under the new proportional system, which replaced the structure where the winning party would carry all the seats in a particular district.

Under the terms of the new law, voters cast two votes, one for a list of candidates and one for a single preferred candidate.

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Although he remains a Saudi ally in Lebanon, he is no longer the only Saudi ally in that country.

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