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The price of victory for Hariri?

June 5th, 2009 · 1 Comment · Lebanon

19,000 Lebanese expatriates from around the world have returned home to cast their votes.

Many of them have been given free tickets by the Future Movement (most likely paid with the Saudi money that was promised). Is this how desperate Hariri is to cling on to power?

Some have called for those who no longer live in Lebanon to no longer have the right to vote. Because when they fly out of the country in a couple of days, they don’t have to live with the consequences.

Even within Lebanon, Hariri is paying $700 to Hizbollah supporters to buy their votes and bring them into central Beirut by bus.

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1 response so far ↓

  • 1 xyz // Jun 7, 2009 at 12.21 am

    oh, for god’s sake. this and your previous post on the subject both conveniently ignore that BOTH sides are doing this for contested districts. and rather openly!!

    the practice exploits a loophole in lebanese election law that allows political parties to pay for transport to the polling stations, so there has been no need to deny that it is taking place. again, ALL the parties are doing it for the tight races. and ALL the parties are offering bribes — just talk to any lebanese and you will hear about the offers and counter-offers.

    i agree it’s a very negative trend (though i reject the idea that diaspora citizens shouldn’t have the right to vote — i’d like to see absentee ballots or voting at embassies), but it is completely disingenuous to cast this — REPEATEDLY, no less — as a tactic exclusive to hariri/mustaqbal when their opponents (and their other allies) are all doing the exact same thing.

    why are you using something so widespread to smear hariri, specifically, rather than the lebanese electoral machine overall? do you have a special grudge against him? because that’s what it sounds like…

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