March 8 Alliance

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The March 8 Alliance is a coalition of various political parties in Lebanon. It had been the ruling coalition in Lebanon with the government headed by prime Minister Najib Mikati from June 2011 until 23 March 2013.[1]

History[edit]

The name dates back to 8 March 2005 when different parties called for a mass demonstration in downtown Beirut in response to the Cedar Revolution. The demonstration thanked Syria for helping stop the Lebanese Civil War and the aid in stabilising Lebanon and supporting the Lebanese resistance to the Israeli occupation.

Inclusion of Free Patriotic Movement[edit]

The Free Patriotic Movement (FPM) was the basis of the March 14 Alliance movement. FPM launched the Liberation War against the Syrian Army on 14 March 1989 and participated in all demonstrations against the Syrian occupation until the Cedar Revolution's mass demonstration on 14 March 2005. The Free Patriotic Movement (FPM) split from the March 14 Alliance on 6 February 2006, when its leader Michel Aoun signed a Memorandum of Understanding with Hezbollah. FPM considered its project against the Syrian regime completed when the Syrian army left Lebanon at the end of April 2005.

Free Patriotic Movement led by Michel Aoun eventually joined the rival March 8 Alliance, becoming one of its principal coalition partners.

Ruling Alliance (2011-2013)[edit]

The Progressive Socialist Party left the March 14 alliance in January 2011 after being one of its cornerstones and ostensibly aligned itself with the alliance's Change and Reform Bloc after Walid Jumblatt visited Damascus. This move gave the alliance and its partners a majority in the parliament, enabling them to name Najib Mikati as prime minister to form the Lebanese government of June 2011.[citation needed]

The government led by March 8 Alliance survived 22 months until Mikati's resignation on 23 March 2013.[2]

Constituent parties[edit]

It held 68 of 128 seats in the parliament after the 2009 elections and consisted of:

Party Arabic Name Seats in Parliament (after 2009 election) Demographic Base
Free Patriotic Movement at-Tayyar al-Watani al-Hurr

التيار الوطني الحر

19 Secular, predominantly Christian
Amal Movement Harakat Amal

حركة أمل

13 Secular, predominantly Shi'a Muslim
Hezbollah Hizballah

حزب الله

12 Shi'a Muslim
Progressive Socialist Party al-Hizb at-Taqaddumi al-Ishtiraki

الحزب التقدمي الإشتراكي

7 Secular, predominantly Druze
Lebanese Democratic Party al-Hizb ad-Dimuqrati al-Lubnani

الحزب الديمقراطي اللبناني

4 Secular, Druze
El Marada Movement Tayyar al-Marada

تيار المردة

3 Christian, mainly Maronite
Glory Movement Harakat Majd

حركة مجد

2 Sunni Muslim
Armenian Revolutionary Federation Tashnag

الطاشناق

2 Secular Armenian
Syrian Social Nationalist Party al-Hizb as-Suri al-Qawmi al-Ijtima'i

الحزب السوري القومي الإجتماعي

2 Secular with support across all communities
Ba'ath Arab Socialist Party Hizb al-Ba'th al-Arabi al-Ishtiraki

حزب البعث العربي الإشتراكي

2 Secular
Solidarity Party Hizb at-Tadamoun

حزب التضامن

1 Maronite Christian
Skaff Bloc Kutlat Skaff

كتلة سكاف

0 Secular, mainly Greek Catholic
Popular Nasserite Organization at-Tanzim ash-Sha’bi al-Nasiri

التنظيم الشعبي الناصري

0 Secular, mainly Sunni Muslim
Arab Democratic Party al-Hizb ad-Dimuqrati al-Arabi

الحزب الديمقراطي العربي

0 Alawi Muslims

References[edit]

  1. ^ March 8 finished, Aoun out in the cold The Daily Star 10 July 2013
  2. ^ El Basha, Thomas (22 March 2013). "Lebanese PM announces resignation of his government". The Daily Star. Retrieved 22 March 2013.