Jumblat Delegation Meets Arslan, Says ‘No One Can Eliminate Anyone’

A joint delegation from the Progressive Socialist Party and the Democratic Gathering parliamentary bloc held talks Tuesday in Khalde with Lebanese Democratic Party leader MP Talal Arslan.

“We come to this dear house regardless of the circumstances and no matter what the political issues at hand might be. We are at our house and there is a common will to reach solutions to the all the political issues,” MP Ghazi Aridi said after the meeting.

“There is an key role for Mir Talal in this essential partnership,” Aridi added.

“We and Mir Talal, and any rational person and everyone who wants the country’s interest, agree on basic principles such as diversity, pluralism, reconciliation, partnership, unified standards and correct representation,” he went on to say.

He reiterated that “no one can eliminate or bypass anyone” in the country.

“There is what resembles consensus in the country on the need to have an electoral law that enjoys everyone’s approval. We support this orientation and despite the pressing deadlines, we have plenty of time to reach a consensual law,” Aridi noted.

The country has not organized parliamentary elections since 2009 and the legislature has since extended its own mandate twice.

While al-Mustaqbal Movement has rejected that the electoral law be fully based on the proportional representation system, arguing that Hizbullah’s arms would prevent serious competition in the party’s strongholds, Jumblat has totally rejected proportional representation, even within a hybrid law, warning that it would “marginalize” the minority Druze community.

The political parties are meanwhile discussing several formats of a so-called hybrid law that mixes proportional representation with the winner-takes-all system.