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Lebanon: Finding a Path from Deadlock to Democracy

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Syria's troop withdrawal in April 2005 allowed Lebanon to hold its first completely independent elections in three decades. However, the Lebanese political system, designed to ensure representation for a diverse population, makes it very difficult for one group to gain enough seats in parliament to govern effectively. Therefore, although Syria's withdrawal has restored Lebanon's sovereignty, it has also left a power vacuum that threatens the stability of the country.

In a new Carnegie Paper, Julia Choucair discusses the problems and prospects facing the largely fractured Lebanese political system. She outlines policies to realistically achieve security, electoral, and economic reform in Lebanon and discusses the role of international actors in Lebanon's political future.