Lebanon to start parliamentary talks next week to pick new premier

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Beirut, Oct. 7, 2020 (dpa/Naija247news) Lebanese President Michel Aoun on Wednesday said parliamentary binding consultations aimed at choosing a new prime minister would start next week.

He said that the consultations would also attempt to break the political stalemate in the country.

“The consultations are set to start on Oct. 15,’’ the state-run National News Agency (NNA) said.

On Sept. 26, prime minister-designate Mustafa Adib stepped down citing political infighting.

He was named by Aoun after his predecessor resigned following the massive explosion at Beirut’s port on Aug. 4.

According to the constitution, the president has to consult with parliamentary blocs before he tasks a premier with forming a new government.

In Lebanon, the president should be a Christian Maronite, the prime minister, a Sunni Muslim; and the parliament speaker, a Shiite Muslim.

The new premier would be tasked to form a government of experts to tackle the country’s worsening economic situation.

Adib’s resignation was a blow to French President Emmanuel Macron’s initiative to press Lebanese politicians to form a cabinet of independent experts able to handle the county’s economic woes.

Macron, who emerged as a main power broker for Lebanon after the Beirut port blast which killed over 190 people, set a 15-day deadline for Lebanese political forces to form a government during a visit to Beirut on Sept. 1.

Macron at a news conference following Adib’s resignation accused Lebanese politicians of violating a commitment made during his September visit.

He, however, said that his country would stand by Lebanon.

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