General elections were supposed to be held in Lebanon in 2013. However, the failure of Parliament in electing a new President, two thirds of the body extended its own term until 2017 then 2018.
Since a new President should have been elected by Parliament before the legislative elections could have taken place, and because of the deadlock which has resulted in fourteen fruitless attempts at choosing a Head of State, Parliament decided on November 5, 2014 to extend its term by 2 years, 7 months. The deadlock was perceived as related to the ongoing situation in the Syrian Civil War, where both sides have major Lebanese parties as allies, as well as the intricacies of Lebanon’s confessional political system.
In June 2017 a new electoral law was passed, replacing the previous system under which the 128 members of parliament were elected from 26 multi-member constituencies in which voters cast as many votes as there were seats in their constituency and the candidates with the highest number of votes within each religious community were elected. The new electoral law instituted proportional representation in 15 multi-member constituencies.
Individuals could submit their candidacy for parliament until midnight of March 6, 2018. 976 candidates were registered, including 111 women. Candidates are obliged to join lists, which have to be finalized by March 26, 2018.
Sources and Further Reading:
Lebanon passing parliamentary law is a step in the right direction
Lebanon to hold long-delayed parliamentary elections on May 6
In Lebanon’s Long-Delayed Election, Hopes for Fresh Faces