Hezbollah could win over half of the parliament seats in Lebanon, according to state media estimates. However, current prime minister Saad Al-Hariri will likely continue leading the country for another term.

Palestinian store displays the flags of Lebanon and Hezbollah

Palestinian store displays the flags of Lebanon and Hezbollah Photo Credit: Olivier Fitoussi/Flash 90

According to the preliminary results from Lebanon’s election, Hezbollah and its political partners are expected to win more than half of the seats in the Lebanese parliament. The Arab country headed to the polls yesterday (Sunday) for the first time in nine years. The final results will be announced later today.

The current estimates say that with its partners, Hezbollah is expected to win more than 67 seats, which would create an obstructive bloc that increases the terror organization’s political influence. However, estimates show that Hezbollah might lose two seats, allocated to one of its largest strongholds – the Baalbek-Hermel governorate. The Christian parties are also expected to increase their political power, while the Lebanese Forces party is expected to win 15 seats compared to the current eight it holds.

On Monday, Israeli Education Minister Naftali Bennett commented on the forthcoming election results, saying they strength Israel’s “long-time perception, Hezbollah=Lebanon. The State of Israel will not distinguish between the sovereign state of Lebanon and Hezbollah and will hold Lebanon responsible for every action that comes out of its territory.”

Even though the pro-Western bloc, headed by current Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri, apparently suffered a blow, al-Hariri is still the candidate with the highest chances of serving as the country’s next prime minister. Al-Hariri is the son of former Prime Minister Rafic Hariri, who was assassinated in 2005. Al-Hariri is in close contact with Saudi Arabia. He was summoned in 2017 to Saudi Arabia in order to discuss his resignation due to what the Saudis perceived as Iran’s increasing influence over the Lebanese government.