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Lebanon: Diab’s Political Tour Will Not Achieve Breakthrough in Govt Formation Process

Lebanon: Diab’s Political Tour Will Not Achieve Breakthrough in Govt Formation Process

Wednesday, 20 January, 2021 - 10:30
Lebanon’s Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri speaks as he stands near caretaker Prime Minister Hassan Diab at the government palace in Beirut, Lebanon, December 11, 2020. REUTERS/Mohamed Azakir/File Photo

Recent visits conducted by caretaker Prime Minister Hassan Diab to President Michel Aoun, Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri, and Speaker Nabih Berri will not move the process of forming the government forward, political sources told Asharq Al-Awsat.

Reviving the consultations to form a strong government of specialists and independents is in Aoun’s hands, according to the sources, and in his willingness to cooperate with Hariri to save the country from the collapse.

The sources emphasized that Aoun has deliberately stopped government consultations following 14 rounds of talks, instead of giving his stance on the cabinet lineup that Hariri had handed over to him.

Moreover, the political sources questioned the reasons behind the continuous targeted campaign by Aoun’s Free Patriotic Movement and former Minister Gebran Bassil against Hariri, as if the latter was responsible for obstructing the birth of the new government.

They noted that Hariri decided to elect Aoun as President in 2016 to prevent the continuation of the presidential vacuum and revive the work in the constitutional institutions.

Emphasizing that the French initiative was still in place, the sources revealed that Hariri was in constant contact with the French leadership, out of his conviction that there was no other alternative to save the country.

Regarding Diab’s move towards the three top leaders, the sources said that he wanted to convey a message of solidarity with Hariri, whom Aoun accused of lying in a recently leaked video.

In the video, Aoun was heard telling Diab that Hariri lied when he said that he presented a government lineup to the president.

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