Lebanon Picks Prez, Ends 6-Month Crisis
But foreign policy, Hezbollah arsenal still divide nation
By Caroline Zimmerman,  Newser User
Posted May 25, 2008 5:26 PM CDT
Saad Hariri, leader of the Lebanese majority, left, walks next the UAE Foreign Minister Abdullah bin Zayed Al Nahyan, right, upon their arrival at the Lebanese Parliament.    (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – Lebanon elected its first leader in 6 months today by naming Gen. Michel Suleiman as president, the Washington Post reports. Fireworks filled the sky to a chorus of car honks after Suleiman secured the post with a near-unanimous 118 of 127 parliamentary votes. But the nation remains torn between US-Saudi backing and the forces of Hezbollah.

Leaders are still divided over foreign policy and Hezbollah's arsenal; the new pact gives Hezbollah veto power over the new cabinet. Suleiman, an ex-army commander, emerged as a Hezbollah candidate until winning over government support. Seeking to mend fences, he told a cheering crowd today that "the gun should only be pointed against the enemy."