Bassil 'Accepts' Proposal from Diab on Seat Distribution
Prime Minister-designate Hassan Diab has made a new initiative towards Free Patriotic Movement chief Jebran Bassil through the mediator Shadi Masaad in order to speed up the formation of the new government, media reports said.
An-Nahar newspaper said Diab has proposed replacing the candidate for the deputy PM post Amal Haddad with Petra Khoury, in addition to naming Ayman Haddad as economy minister and merging the defense and energy portfolios and allotting them to Raimond Ghajar.
“This means the exclusion of the candidate for the defense portfolio Michel Menassa as well as Amal Haddad, and in this way Bassil would not get a sixth minister,” An-Nahar said.
According to information obtained by the daily, Bassil has accepted the proposal on the condition of the consent of the parties who had objections – the Marada Movement and the Syrian Social Nationalist Party.
“Intensive contacts are underway away from the media spotlight and any progress regarding this proposal might lead to breaking the deadlock over the government formation,” the newspaper said, citing sources.