Lebanon PM-Designate Resigns amid Impasse over Gov’t Formation

Lebanon PM-Designate Resigns amid Impasse over Gov’t Formation

TEHRAN (Tasnim) – Lebanon’s prime minister-designate Mustapha Adib announced his resignation after his efforts to line up a non-partisan cabinet ran into trouble, particularly over who would run the finance ministry.

In a televised address on Saturday, Adib said he was stepping down from “the task of forming the government” following a meeting with President Michel Aoun, Reuters reported.

Adib, a former ambassador to Berlin, was picked on August 31 to form a cabinet after the last government led by Hassan Diab resigned following the Beirut port blast on August 4 that killed some 200 people and left thousands homeless.

Adib’s resignation came days after Aoun told reporters Lebanon would be going to “hell” if a new government was not formed soon.

Public anger in Lebanon has escalated since the Beirut blast, which was blamed on the government’s apathy and inaction, leading to protests on the streets demanding urgent political and economic reforms.

Crushed by a mounting debt crisis, the country’s banks are paralyzed and its currency is in freefall, leading to hyperinflation, soaring poverty and unemployment.

Talks with the International Monetary Fund on a vital bailout package stalled this year after the country defaulted on paying back its debt.

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