Assad Meets Arslan Amid Effort to Resolve Standoff on State Ministry

Syrian President Bashar Assad on Wednesday held talks with Lebanese Democratic Party leader Talal Arslan, who has resigned from Premier Najib Miqati’s cabinet to protest the ministry of state allotted to him.

Arslan, who was conditioning his particiatpin in the government on getting a portfolio, announced his resignation a few hours after the cabinet formation decree was issued last week.

His advisor, Salim Hamadeh, unveiled that a decision was in the making to solve Arslan’s decision to boycott the cabinet. “We don’t want to become an obstacle because we know the meaning of having a government at this difficult time.”

“We hope that it would carry out its responsibilities,” he added.

Arslan’s brother-in-law, Marwan Kheireddine, will most probably replace him as minister of state.

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