Hizbullah Warns of 'Chaos' if Government Delayed


A senior Hizbullah official warned Friday that Lebanon could fall into chaos and "complete collapse" unless a new government is formed.

Sheikh Ali Daamoush's comments came amid more bickering between politicians on the formation of a new Cabinet amid a crippling financial crisis and ongoing mass protests against the country's ruling elite.

Prime Minister-designate Hassan Diab had been expected to announce an 18-member Cabinet on Friday, but last minute disputes among political factions scuttled his latest attempt.

Lebanon has been without a government since Prime Minister Saad Hariri resigned Oct. 29 amid nationwide protests against corruption and mismanagement by a political class that has been running the country since the end of the 1975-90 civil war.

Panic and anger gripped the public as they watched their local currency, pegged to the dollar for almost three decades, plummet, losing more than 60% of its value in recent weeks on the black market. Meanwhile, banks have imposed informal capital controls, limiting withdrawal of dollars and foreign transfers from the country.

The economy has worsened since mass protests began Oct. 17, turning violent in recent weeks as anger mounts. Earlier this week, protesters carried out acts of vandalism, targeting mostly banks. The eastern Bekaa Valley on Wednesday night witnessed sectarian attacks unseen in years. That raised alarm the political, economic, financial and social crisis could get out of control.

"We see that it is necessary to form a Cabinet as soon as possible because we know that the crisis which the country and people are suffering from cannot be solved without a Cabinet," Daamoush said during the Friday prayers sermon.

"Losing the opportunity to form a government now means that the country is headed into chaos, disorder and total collapse," Daamoush warned.

Following a meeting between Diab and the parliament speaker on Thursday, news spread that the new government with 18 ministers will most likely be announced Friday.

But a person taking part in negotiations for the government formation told The Associated Press on Friday "there are some problems" they are trying to solve. He said some political groups are insisting the government be made up of 24 ministers to have more representation, while Diab is insisting on 18.

The person spoke on condition of anonymity because he was not authorized to speak to the media.

Protesters have already rejected the new Cabinet saying that although it is going to be made up of experts, the ministers are named by the political groups they blame for Lebanon's problems. The protest movement is insisting that the government be made of independent technocrats.

Comments 7
Thumb farsical.resistance 17 January 2020, 19:52

The chaos is of your own making. This is like a dysfunctional family on a trip in the family van. Nasrallah is the dad he's in driving seat. Hassan Diab is the mom siting next to him in silence while Berri, Aoun, Bassil, Arslan, Frangieh and Hardan are the unruly children loudly arguing in the back seats about anything and everything. Nasrallah the dad squats at them from time to time with his free arm and threaten "don't make me turn this car around". The only one with no say whatsoever about where this car is going is Diab the mom, and it's supposed to be her car!

Thumb roflmfao 17 January 2020, 21:32

Dude.. I've seen this one.. it's National Lampoon Hassin Nasroulla Ashura Vacation...

Missing womendoc 18 January 2020, 03:08

Good metaphor

Missing samiam 17 January 2020, 19:53

These politicians you speak of are the same ones obstructing a government which will never be accepted by anyone. And, just to ask, what has kizb been doing the last few months?

Thumb roflmfao 17 January 2020, 21:30


Thumb s.o.s 18 January 2020, 01:28

Very likely.... these people are experts at manipulating people, I’m sure they excell at digital manipulation as well. And counterfeit software for sure.... because once a thief, always a thief!

Thumb s.o.s 18 January 2020, 01:30

And soon enough inchallah ‘vanish’ :)