International efforts to resolve the presidential vacuum in Lebanon are stumbling at the intransigence of the local parties, which has so far prevented a tangible breakthrough.
French Presidential Envoy Jean-Yves Le Drian is expected to visit Beirut this month in continuation of Paris' efforts to help the country’s disputing parties to agree on a new president for the republic.
Eleven months after the expiry of President Michel Aoun’s term, Lebanon’s political parties are still unable to elect a successor.
The Hezbollah party and Amal Movement are insisting on nominating the head of the Marada movement, former Minister Suleiman Franjieh, while the opposition is asking Speaker Nabih Berri to call for successive electoral sessions that would ultimately end with the election of a new president.
Member of the Lebanese Forces MP Fadi Karam pointed to “continuous, diverse and extensive initiatives” to end the crisis, the latest of which has been from Qatar.
He added: “It would have been more beneficial for the internal parties to resort to the constitution and apply it instead of waiting for external initiatives.”
In a radio interview, Karam stressed that the Qatari initiative was not aimed at electing Army Commander General Joseph Aoun as president, adding that the Qataris were “open to all possibilities.”
Despite the multitude of initiatives, the issue is still being met with “internal intransigence” and “rigidity in positions,” according to parliamentary sources who spoke to Asharq Al-Awsat.
They revealed that the internal political forces “did not show sufficient flexibility in dealing with these efforts.”
This assessment was confirmed by MP Ghassan Skaff, who said on X that the Qatari and French efforts will not succeed if they are not reciprocated by the Lebanese parties.