News In Brief

New Lebanese government wins legislative confidence

Parliament gave Syrian-backed Prime Minister Rashid Karami's national coalition government a strong vote of confidence Tuesday to try to end Lebanon's civil war. The vote was 53 to 15, with three deputies abstaining. Mr. Karami's government needed the majority vote to be formally installed.

The 71 parliament members attending Tuesday's session then voted, in separate balloting, to give Karami's government special powers for nine months to cancel or amend decrees issued by the previous government of Prime Minister Shafik Wazzan.

The parliament also extended its term by another two years. The current legislators were elected to four-year terms in 1972, and no election has been held since because of the civil war. The legislature has extended its own life four previous times for periods of two years each.

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