Lebanon’s embassies in countries having Sunday weekends have finished making preparations for Lebanese expats to vote in parliamentary elections.
Out of the millions of Lebanese expats around the world, approximately 190,000 have registered their names with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs in the United Arab Emirates, the United States, Australia, Europe, and Africa.
On Friday night, the first part of the Lebanese expat voting process in ten Arab and Muslim nations concluded, with approximately 60% of registered voters voting.
The Lebanese Phalange Party (Kataeb), the Progressive Socialist Party, and the Lebanese Forces party were the top three opposition parties in the general election. In Iran and Syria, Hezbollah and the Amal movement dominated the electoral landscape, with the highest turnout.
In the Gulf states, Sunni voters turned up in large numbers, particularly in the boxes allotted for Beirut’s second district.
Because the forces of change, also known as the candidates of the revolutionary movements who took to the streets in 2019, had different lists, it was impossible to track the votes cast for them.
According to electoral law, candidates must maintain an electoral quiet until Monday.
Sources close to them were contacted by Arab News.
“According to our sources in the Gulf countries, particularly in Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Qatar, and Bahrain, a good percentage of expats voted for the forces of change,” one of them stated on condition of anonymity. “Votes in Beirut’s second constituency, specifically by the Sunni voter, were extraordinary, although some Sunnis boycotted the elections in keeping with the Future Movement’s determination not to participate,” said one voter who voted for the revolution’s lists. Other voters abstained because they couldn’t find anyone on the conventional parties’ lists who could persuade them to vote for them again; in particular, Shiite voters decided to abstain from voting.”
Syria had the highest voter turnout, with 83.79 percent, followed by Iran with 73.83 percent, Oman with 66.45 percent, Kuwait with 65.59 percent, Saudi Arabia with 49.26 percent, Bahrain with 66.46 percent, Jordan with 59.63 percent, Qatar with 48.72 percent, Iraq with 48 percent, and Egypt with 44 percent.
In these nations, approximately 18,000 expats voted out of approximately 31,000 registered voters. The overall figure was 58.89 percent.
In 2018, over 65 percent of Arab countries voted.
With the exception of two ballot boxes from Iran, which Lebanese ambassador Abbas Hassan carried personally by plane because DHL does not engage with Iranian officials, the ballot boxes arrived in Lebanon on Saturday, sealed with red wax and equipped with a tracking device. He stated that there were 474 votes in the two boxes.
The Ministry of Interior received three voting boxes holding 853 votes at the Masnaa checkpoint on Lebanon’s Syrian border.
The ballot boxes were transported to the Banque du Liban for protection until the evening of May 15, when the electoral process in Lebanon came to a finish, and they were sorted with the rest of the ballot boxes.