Bishara al- Khuri
Khuri, Bishara al-
(also Bishara Khalil). Born Aug. 10, 1890, in Rishmayya; died 1964 in Beirut. Lebanese state and political figure; Maronite Christian. A lawyer by education and profession.
AI-Khuri occupied various government posts between 1928 and 1943. From 1943 to 1952 he was the first president of the independent Lebanese Republic. In 1943 al-Khuri and the first Lebanese prime minister, Riyad as-Solh, acting in their capacities as representatives of the Christian and Muslim communities of Lebanon, concluded the National Pact. This agreement strengthened the confessional principle, in accordance with which the highest government and public positions in Lebanon were divided among the existing religious communities. Al-Khuri retired in the face of growing popular discontent, which culminated in a general strike in September 1952.