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Lebanese Opposition Backs Moderate PM Candidate


Najib Mikati
Lebanon's anti-Syrian opposition has named a moderate pro-Syrian politician as its choice for prime minister, in a bid to have May's general election go forward on time.

Anti-Syrian lawmakers threw their support behind former Public Works Minister Najib Mikati. They say they chose him because he has pledged to hold elections on time and to fire Lebanon's security chiefs - both key opposition demands.

Pro-Syrian deputies have not publicly said whom they would support. But under Lebanon's constitution, anyone they chose must be a Sunni Muslim.

Lebanon has been without a government since February 28, when the prime minister stepped down following the assassination of his predecessor Rafik Hariri. His killing led to accusations and protests against Syria and its supporters in the Lebanese government, and to the withdrawal of thousands of Syrian troops from Lebanon.

Some information for this report provided by AFP and AP.

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