This paper details an overview of the structures of politics and government in Lebanon. France elevated the this territory into a sovereign state in 1943, having first carved out the boundaries of what would become the Lebanese state in 1920…
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Structures of politics and government in Lebanon
Lebanon shares geographic boundaries with Syria and Israel, and has been locked in contrasting relationships with both, with Syria being a dominant influence in the politics and governance structures of Lebanon since the 1970’s at least, and with Israel being the focal point of strife for the country having been involved in sporadic conflicts with certain Israeli groups, culminating in a short war in 2006. Syria, on the other hand, had a long stay as a military occupier of Lebanon that stretched from 1976 all the way to 2005, with its grip on many of the forces that control Lebanese politics and government continuing even way after the cessation of the occupation. A long civil war stretching from 1975 to 1990 left deep political scars, with sectarian groups coming to dominate the lines of division among the different political groups and ensuring that political struggles are protracted, bitter and fraught with disunity and the lack of political goodwill among the competing political sects.
The end of the civil war in 1991, in particular, marked the beginning of another period of relative peace that would end with the war with Israel in 2005, confirming the observation of Lebanon’s pattern of 15 years of transition from peace to war to peace and war again, in timed intervals. By way of an overview, the Republic of Lebanon has its capital in Beirut and officially marks its day of independence as a state on November 22, 1943. The Lebanese Constitution was ratified on May 22, 1926, and has undergone three changes, with the last of the amendments coming in in 1990, relating to required changes from the 1989 Talif Accord. Three religious threads, Jewish, Christian and Muslim sway laws relating to social and personal relations, even as influences from the Old Ottoman legal system and French law also dominate the system of laws in the country. 21 years is the age when Lebanese men acquire the right to vote, and for women the same age applies, but with restrictions to voting being only allowed women who have primary education. The current head of state, Michel Sulayman, has been president since 2008. The entire cabinet of Najib Miqati, together with Prime Minister Miqati himself, relinquished their posts on March 22, 2013, leaving the government in the hands of a caretaker group headed by the President, until the country is able to replace the resigned Prime Minister. The country is divided into six administrative regions, with Beirut or Beyrouth being the most prominent as a political and economic center of the country. Under the Lebanese political system, the president holds office for six years, and chooses the prime minister in partnership with Lebanese Congress called the National Assembly, which acts in a consultative manner in matter relating to
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