Back on the brink (3)



 
PART 3 of MENASSAT'S news blog about the crisis in Lebanon.
 
By MENASSAT.COM STAFF
 
Naji Ali still watching.jpg
© Naji Ali / AFP

RESISTANCE BEYOND TIME AND SPACE – HEZBOLLAH'S MEDIA CAMPAIGNS

The website Arab Media & Society takes an in-depth look at Hezbollah's media strategy following the assassination of Iman Mugniyeh.


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POSTED AT 1:31 PM ON MONDAY, MAY 19, 2008

MEDIA WARS - ON THE ROLE OF MEDIA IN THE LATEST CIVIL CRISIS

"No need to go to Doha, join the Hiwar (discussion) here in Beirut!" is the slogan for a debate taking place tonight at 7.30 p.m. in the "961" bar in Gemmayze. The event is organized by Nahwa al Muwatiniya (Towards citizenship) and speakers will include Dr. Nabil Dajani, professor of Communication at AUB, and Dr. Dima Dabbous-Sensenig, professor of Communication and Media Law and Ethics at LAU. Tonight's debate is the first in a series of Hiwar sessions and activities on the current Lebanese crisis.

Contact: 01.354.466, 03.562.478.


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POSTED AT 12:49 PM ON MONDAY, MAY 19, 2008

ON ONE STREET IN BEIRUT, ALL ARE WELCOME

All religions and political views are embraced on Lebanon's Hamra Street, which remains a bastion of liberal thought in a city riven by sectarian conflict.
By Borzou Daragahi, Los Angeles Times Staff Writer

BEIRUT -- Through their apartment windows or from just over the tops of their newspapers, the artists, writers, students, journalists and lawyers peered at the beefy armed men.
They had come before, grimacing young toughs wielding Kalashnikovs, their legs dangling over the sides of pickup trucks, swaggering along the sidewalks, festooning streetlights with their flags.

 
This time it was the Shiite Muslim militia Hezbollah and its allies, gangs of less disciplined gunmen who burned buildings and terrorized their enemies. But others had tried to impose their will here before, in the one part of this city that has refused to bow to narrow-mindedness and embraces the country's political and religious melting pot.

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POSTED AT 12:06 PM ON MONDAY, MAY 19, 2008

THE HUMAN LEAGUE: THE LEBANON



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POSTED AT 12:06 PM ON MONDAY, MAY 19, 2008

QATAR SUGGESTS UNITY GOVERNMENT IN LEBANON
 

Qatar on Sunday proposed the formation of a unity government as a possible way out of the current crisis in Lebanon, according to a delegate attending a meeting of Lebanese leaders in Doha.
 

The proposal came on the second day of talks aimed at resolving a protracted political impasse in Lebanon that erupted into deadly fighting and saw Syria- and Iran-backed Hezbollah and its allies temporarily seize swathes of west Beirut.

The Qatari suggestion was to postpone a decision over a disputed electoral law and move directly to the election of Army Commander General Michel Sleiman as Lebanese president, the delegate said, following a meeting between Qatar's Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani and the main leaders of the rival factions.

It also proposed forming a unity government of 30 ministers, with 13 ministers from the parliament majority, 10 from the opposition and seven to be chosen by the elected president.

Although the opposing factions agree on electing Sleiman as a president, they disagree on power-sharing in a unity government.

The opposition has previously insisted on holding more than a third of the cabinet portfolios.

SOURCE: AFP/NOW LEBANON

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POSTED AT 8:17 PM ON FRIDAY, MAY 16, 2008


LEBANON LEADERS LEAVE FOR DOHA TALKS

Leaders of Lebanon's government and opposition have left for Qatar this evening to attend Arab League-sponsored peace talks. Prime Minister Fouad Saniora left with parliament majority leader Saad Hariri on Hariri's private plane, Lebanese TV reported. The other attendants left on a plane provided by Qatar Airways.

The talks are meant to result in the election of Army commander general Michel Sleiman as President.

From the airport, Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea said Hezbollah must reduce its expectations and that the main point is the relation of Hezbollah to the state.

Christian opposition leader Michel Aoun said, "We have requested an interim government in case we don't reach an agreement."

Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah will not be present at the talks; Hezbollah will be represented by its parliamentary bloc headed by MP Mohammed Raad.


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POSTED AT 4:34 PM ON FRIDAY, MAY 16, 2008



Wheelchair-bound veterans of the civil war went to the airport today to see off Lebanon's rival politicians on their way to peace talks in Qatar. Their message: "If you don't agree, don't come back!!!" © Sharif Karim / Reuters


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POSTED AT 4:10 PM ON FRIDAY, MAY 16, 2008

QATAR HOSTS SQUABBLING LEBANESE POLITICIANS

DOHA (AFP) — Lebanon's squabbling political leaders were to meet in Qatar on Friday for talks brokered by the Arab League aimed at ending a long-running feud that drove the country to the brink of a new civil war.

After nearly a week of fighting that left 65 people dead and some 200 wounded, the US-backed government and the Hezbollah-led opposition agreed to a new national dialogue to elect a president and form a unity government.

Qatar's Emir Sheikh Hamad bin Khalifa al-Thani was due to open the talks in a Doha hotel at 9:00 pm (1800 GMT).

A six-point plan was agreed in Beirut on Thursday, under the mediation of an Arab League delegation headed by Qatari Prime Minister and Foreign Minister Sheikh Hamad bin Jassem al-Thani.

Under the deal, the rivals undertook to launch a dialogue "to shore up the authority of the Lebanese state throughout the country," to refrain from using weapons to further political aims and to remove militants from the streets.

It also called for the removal of all roadblocks that have paralysed air traffic and closed major highways, and for the rivals to refrain from using language that could incite violence.

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POSTED AT 1:37 PM ON FRIDAY, MAY 16, 2008

TWO MEN, ONE WAR, 33 YEARS ON...


Having fought on opposing sides during the brutal Lebanese civil war, two men reconcile openly with their violent history to find forgiveness. Directed by Eric Trometer, the founder of Tarmak Films in London.


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POSTED AT 4:30 PM ON THURSDAY, MAY 15, 2008

HANDALA: STILL WATCHING



On a day when the Palestinians remember Al-Naqba (The Catastrophe) and Israel celebrates the 60th anniversary of its existence, Lebanon is licking its wounds after a Naqba of its own. Over the years, Naji Ali's character Handala has silently watched horror after horror, betrayal upon betrayal. Today, whether in Palestine or in Lebanon, Handala is still watching. © Naji Ali / Ramzi Haider – AFP


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