Hezbollah Moves Closer to Power In Lebanon

Druze leader throws crucial support behind group
By Damon Albarn,  Newser User
Posted Jan 22, 2011 7:35 AM CST
Promoted on Newser Jan 22, 2011 9:49 AM CST
Hezbollah leader Sheik Hassan Nasrallah, left, meets with Druse leader Walid Jumblatt, in Beirut.   (AP)

(User Submitted) – The militant Shia group Hezbollah has been given a boost in its efforts to form a coalition government in Lebanon, reports the BBC. Influential Druze leader Walid Jumblatt indicated he will support the group when parliamentary talks begin Monday to pick a new prime minister. Current PM Saad Hariri’s unity government recently collapsed when Hezbollah members resigned, and support from Jumblatt is acknowledged to be essential to any candidate trying to form a government.

Tension is high in Lebanon as the country awaits the results of a UN inquiry into the 2005 assassination of PM Rafik Hariri, Saad’s father. Members of Hezbollah are expected to be implicated, and the group has denounced the investigation as a US-Israeli plot. The impasse has raised fears of a return to sectarian violence.

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