Report: Signs of ‘Blocking Third’ Impasse ‘Looms’ as Aoun Continues Govt. Discussions
The results of contacts between President Michel Aoun and Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri, aimed at resolving the crisis of forming the government, are expected to unfold in the coming hours following Hariri's return from London today, although a solution to the impasse seem “unlikely,” the Saudi Asharq al-Awsat newspaper reported on Saturday.
According to information, a solution for the representation obstacle of pro-Hizbullah Sunni MPs seems “unlikely as recognized by most parties”, said the daily.
A new impasse has reportedly emerged namely the refusal of some, especially Hizbullah, to grant President Aoun and his team (headed by Foreign Minister Jebran Bassil), 11 cabinet seats granting them a power to veto the government decisions, said the daily.
Before Aoun reveals the final outcome of his consultations with Hariri, member of the Strong Lebanon bloc, MP Alain Aoun said a solution for the government impasse “seems blocked as long as no one wants to back down from his conditions.”
“Aoun leads the last chance to save the situation and work on forming a government. If he fails to succeed he may take a step, and no one else knows the nature of the option that he may resort to,” the MP said in remarks to the daily.
He added: “Hizbullah has previously declared that it does not object to the President obtaining 11 seats. We do not know if some want to put the problem of disruption at the President to cover the real causes.”
On the other hand, al-Mustaqbal Movement official told the daily on condition of anonymity: “Who is blocking the government now is one party named Hizbullah, because the agreement between Aoun and Hariri was final, and the decrees to form a government were written and ready, but were halted when the party declined to hand over the names of its ministers.
"Certainly the President has no interest in disrupting his mandate, and Hariri isn’t pleased about disrupting his mission,” he added.
Furthermore, Secretary-General of al-Mustaqbal, Ahmed Hariri, said: “The PM-designate will not be subject to the will of Hizbullah and to a group of his representatives. It will not happen today, nor tomorrow or in a 100 years."
He stressed that PM "will not go through a government defined by Hizbullah. His government was ready and known to the President, Speaker (Nabih Berri) and all concerned,” pointing out that President Aoun is "working to find a solution.”
In a statement indicating further “escalation”, MP Jihad al-Samad of the Consultative Gathering affirmed adherence to their stance saying: “We will only to accept to be represented as part of the Sunni share (Hariri’s), we will not accept o be represented as part of the (Strong Lebanon) bloc, and i won't accept any party to get a veto power in Cabinet.”