Lebanon appoints a new army chief, ending 2-year impasse

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Lebanon’s Cabinet has named a new army commander, ending a two-year impasse over the appointment of the country’s top security and military posts.

The government named Brig. Gen. Joseph Aoun to the post on Wednesday.

Aoun is replacing Gen. Jean Kahwaji, who has held the top military post since 2008, and whose term was twice extended after political forces failed to agree on security and military portfolios.

Aoun led an army unit which served along the border with Israel and is now stationed in the volatile town of Arsal, bordering Syria.

Violence from Syria’s civil war has frequently spilled over the border, inflaming Lebanon’s own political divisions.

For two years, Lebanon was without a president until political groups agreed last October to name President Michel Aoun, ending the deadlock.

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