BEIRUT (Reuters) – Lebanon’s ambassador to Germany Mustapha Adib looks set to be designated prime minister at formal consultations on Monday after winning political backing from the main Sunni Muslim party, the Future Movement.
Lebanon’s prime minister must be a Sunni according to the country’s sectarian system. The government led by Hassan Diab quit earlier this month following the catastrophic explosion at Beirut port that killed some 190 people.
Lebanon is grappling with a financial meltdown that has devastated the economy and is seen as the biggest threat to its stability since the 1975-90 civil war.
If the designation goes ahead without last minute complications, Adib will be nominated before a visit to Beirut on Monday by French President Emmanuel Macron, who is leading efforts to press Lebanese leaders to reform.
The Future Movement, led by former premier Saad al-Hariri, announced its support for Adib after a meeting of its parliamentary bloc on Sunday.
The Iran-backed Shi’ite party Hezbollah and its Shi’ite ally the Amal Movement will also nominate Adib in the consultations, a senior Shi’ite source told Reuters.
The Free Patriotic Movement, will also nominate Adib as the country’s next prime minister, party leader Gebran Bassil told Reuters on Sunday.
President Michel Aoun, a Maronite Christian allied with Hezbollah, is required to designate the candidate with the greatest level of support among MPs at Monday’s consultations.
Once designated, the process of forming a new government will get underway. Until a new administration is agreed, the Diab government continues in a caretaker capacity.
Mustapha Adib seems like another Hassan Diab,” Lebanon analyst Ramez Dagher wrote on Twitter.
Mustapha Adib seems like another Hassan Diab… https://t.co/vvGMFZFTpY— Ramez Dagher (@ramezdagher) August 30, 2020
Like Diab, Adib is an academic, and is not well known among the public.
Adib has a PhD in law and political science and has taught at the state-funded Lebanese University since 2010.
Both have ties to former Prime Minister Najib Mikati, with Adib serving as an adviser to him since 2000, while Diab served as education minister in his cabinet.
Even Adib’s four-letter name is an acronym of Diab.
REUTERS/ AL JAZEERA
Adib’s name was one of 3 suggested by French president Emanuel Macron to president Aoun during a phone call.
Adib is expected to meet Macron Tuesday asa PM designate.
Aoun named 3 October 17 activists that he wants in the news cabinet , but al 3 turned the offer down:
Paula Yaqoubian, Wasef el Haraket and Lucien Bouregeli.
All 3 reportedly consider Adib as apart of the ruling corrupt political class for this reason they refuse to be part of such a cabinet
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