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From L to R : Amal Movement leader Speaker Nabih Berri, FPM founder president Michel Aoun, Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah. In Lebanon they refer to Amal and Hezbollah as being the Shiite duo and being blamed for scrapping the expat vote. The duo is aware that the voices of the Lebanese abroad will punish the corrupt authorities, and knows that its ally, the “Free Patriotic Movement” will be the most affected by the expatriate voice

The ruling authorities in Lebanon decided to steal the voice of the expatriates the same way they looted their hard earned money and Lebanon’s treasury and sovereignty,

The authorities decided to steal the voice of the expatriate and their right to vote in the upcoming democratic race. The decision has already been taken. There will be no expatriate vote in the upcoming parliamentary elections, and the reason is clear: Their vote will not serve the interests of the corrupt authorities, and it will pose a great danger to their corruption and interests, and therefore they will not allow the expatriate voice that yearns for change at home to succeed .

The ruling authorities decided to suspend an article in the election law, which stipulates allocating 6 parliamentary seats for expatriates who can vote at their current locations ,

Scrapping the vote of the expatriate means the expatriate Lebanese cannot vote at the embassies of their current locations but have to go back to Lebanon to vote at their birthplace where they are supposed to be registered to vote .

The whole idea is to to marginalize the expatriate voice, which will inevitably call for change , specially “ the new expatriates who recently emigrated and still feel the bitterness of the practices of the ruling authorities that destroyed their lives and pushed them to leave their homeland with their families.

Demonstrators woke up on Nov 22, 2019 to an anonymous burning of the giant fist in downtown Beirut, the “symbol of revolution” since the popular movement began on October 17, but this did not deter them from organizing various rallies and activities in Beirut, Sidon, Tripoli and several cities. The marches moved on the beat of national songs and the demonstrators raised the flags of Lebanon, chanting for independence from the parties of the political class, which the protesters blame for the economic deterioration and the political crisis. November 22, 2019. More than a million Lebanese who thronged the streets in the country in October 2019 wished to overthrow a sectarian and self-serving ruling dispensation, but peaceful protesters simply do not have the tools to take on a well-armed state, backed by the powerful Hezbollah militia. They expected the Free World and specially the US will use its massive diplomatic clout more energetically to protect their rights—for instance, by making aid to Lebanon’s military conditional on the assurance that it will not target protesters. Furthermore, they say that the United States could easily use its financial prowess to sanction the corrupt and freeze their ill-gotten assets abroad.

The accusing fingers are being pointed by the expatriates at the ruling authorities as a whole, but the Shiite duo ( The Iranian backed Hezbollah militant group and its ally the Amal Movement ) appear to be blamed the most for this decision sine it is not difficult for those who shook the foundations of the state and violated the decision of peace and war and the rule of borders, to usurp the right of the expatriate to vote today.

The Shiite duo is aware that the voices of the Lebanese abroad will punish the corrupt authorities, and knows that its ally, FPM ( Free Patriotic Movement ) will be the most affected by the expatriate voice. Hezbollah’s ally President Michel Aoun is the founder of FPM , which is now being run by his son-in law Gebran Bassil , who is reportedly the most despised politician in Lebanon . Bassil has reportedly been pressing for retaining the expat vote but his rivals called his efforts ” cry wolf’ and overbidding, FPM is being blamed for giving the Christian cover for Hezbollah’s takeover of Lebanon.

A cartoon showing Lebanon transformation from Switzerland of the East to a colony of Iran. Many Lebanese now feel that Lebanon is an Iranian colony . For Iran Hezbollah in Lebanon is Iran in Lebanon and Iran reportedly considers its border starts in Hezbollah’s stronghold of south Lebanon.

It seems clear that the “corrupt” authorities have taken their decision to deprive the expatriate of the right to vote, and it have begun preparing the appropriate scenario to justify this under different headings, arguments and pretexts related to logistical procedures

The authorities already decided, will they succeed? Or will the expatriates revolt to preserve their constitutional right?

Extracted from an article originally written by Walid Khoury, Lebanon Debate

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