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Hezbollah falls behind, reformists gain ground in Lebanon elections


Hezbollah and its allies have failed to retain their majority in the Lebanese parliament, the official results suggested on Tuesday, while the independents made a surprise breakthrough.

The full results announced by the ministry of internal affairs two days after the elections disclosed that no bloc will control the 128-seat house, a fear of an impasse may pave the way for a tense period of political turmoil.

The elections, the first since Lebanon was devastated by its worst economic crisis and a catastrophic explosion at the port of Beirut in 2020, were considered a prerequisite for a crucial Fund rescue.

Iran-backed Hezbollah and its major allies had the support of about 70 legislators in the outgoing parliament but not the 65 seats needed to maintain a majority.

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Their strongest opponents to parliament will be headed by the Lebanese Christian Forces party of former warlord Samir Geagea, who took several new seats at the back of an anti-Hezbollah campaign.

The new reformist faces that entered the legislative race on the values of a 2019 anti-establishment uprising have proved stronger than many had predicted.

At least 13 independents who supported the 2019 protest movement were elected.

Twelve of them will be new members of Parliament.

Hezbollah and its ally Amal maintained the 27 seats reserved for Shia lawmakers. However, the Christian bloc headed by President Michel Aoun and other coalition partners lost ground.

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