Lebanon: Aoun begins consultations to select new PM

County has been without a full government for a year

26 July, 13:12

    (ANSA) - BEIRUT, 26 LUG - Lebanese President Michel Aoun on Monday began consultations to designate a new prime minister, who will make the third attempt in a year to form a new government as the country faces a serious political and economic crisis.

    The country has been without a full government since former prime minister Hassan Diab resigned following the explosion at the port of Beirut that killed more than 200 people last August.

    Despite an economic and financial crisis defined by the World Bank as one of the worst in the world in over 150 years, political infighting has repeatedly stalled progress, with two prime minister-designates since that time, both of whom were unsuccessful in forming a government.

    Consultations between President Michel Aoun and parliamentary blocs are aiming to find a substitute for Saad Hariri, who resigned as prime minister on 15 July after nine months of political haggling did not produce a new government.

    Talks began at 10:30 am Monday in the presidential palace and will last through the afternoon with a final selection to be announced by the end of the day, said the country's state news agency.

    According to local media, billionaire businessman and two-time prime minister Najib Mikati, 65, is the most likely choice.


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