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Abu Dhabi, UAESunday 16 December 2018

WATCH: Lebanon is preparing for its first parliamentary elections in nearly a decade

For the latest: Lebanese elections 2018: live updates

Days away from its first parliamentary elections in almost a decade, Lebanon is facing the familiar prospect of its fate being dictated by the agendas of neighbouring states, rather than its own citizens.

The country has long been a battleground for regional influence, with Iran, Syria, Saudi Arabia and Israel all having a stake in the outcome. All eyes will be on Lebanon’s Prime Minister, Saad Hariri, has been in power since December 2016 and is seeking to remain in power. During the campaign, he has stepped up his criticism of Hezbollah, however any future government will have to take into account the powerful Shiite group. In addition, there are Independent voices and civic candidates trying to make a dent in the system.

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Lebanon election 2018: A bloody history that encapsulates the country's woes