Lebanon’s prime minister resigns after failure to reach consensus on a government

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The resignation of ya squeeze minister Mustafa Adib it clouds the political drift of Lebanon. After almost a month of negotiations, the person in charge of forming the Government has abandoned his intentions to create a non-partisan Cabinet due to the absence of the initial consensus that led to his appointment on August 31. His resignation endangers the receipt of international aid promoted by France to combat the deplorable economic situation in which the country of cedars finds itself.

“As the efforts to form a government reached their final stages, it became clear to me that the consensus on which I accepted this national mission in this difficult circumstance in the history of Lebanon no longer exists,” Adib said in a televised message after submit your resignation. The impossibility of forming a government complicates the implementation of the reform process that the country requires to recover economically and clean up its corrupt and inefficient political system.

The intervention of French President Emmanuel Macron late August led to Adib’s nomination to form a non-sectarian government. According to the French route plan, Lebanon had to implement certain anti-corruption reforms in order to receive international aid to cover the debts and economic losses suffered after the explosion of the port of Beirut on August 4. The international community at a donor conference organized by Macron agreed to aid 253 million euros to Lebanon after implementing the relevant reforms.

Cast of ministers

“I emphasize that this initiative must continue,” he insisted, referring to the commitment to the Macron, joined by other Sunni, Shiite and Christian political leaders. Adib, a Sunni Muslim who until August was ambassador to Germany, wished his successor luck in the “difficult task” of forming a government. The Lebanese political authorities promised Paris a new technical Cabinet in mid-September, but the pitfalls arose when the time came to appoint the different ministers, especially for the Finance portfolio.

In Lebanon, both the society and the political system are divided into 18 religious sects that include Christians and Muslims. Amal and Hezbollah, the two main Shiite parties in Lebanon, demanded that a Shiite occupy the post of Finance Minister as has been the case since 2014. After several negotiations with both groups, Adib, convinced of the need to avoid the sectarianism in the appointments, he was unable to reach an agreement on how the minister would be chosen.

Currently more than half of the population is below the poverty line. With the economy on the brink of collapse, the explosion suffered last August 4 in the port of Beirut that caused almost 200 deaths further devalued the Lebanese pound in its worst economic crisis since the civil war (1975 – 1990). The tragedy led to the resignation of former Prime Minister Hasan Diab on August 10, after just eight months in power.

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