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Berri Meets Bassil: No One will Replace Miqati, Solutions Continue to Crumble

Speaker Nabih Berri confirmed that Premier-designate Najib Miqati has no substitute and stressed that his continued efforts to form the cabinet didn’t end yet.

“Others have taken longer time trying to accomplish this task,” Berri told An Nahar newspaper published Wednesday.

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Miqati’s Circles to Aoun: Constitution Can’t Be Turned into a Game

Prime Minister-designate Najib Miqati’s circles have snapped back at Free Patriotic Movement leader Michel Aoun saying the man tasked with forming the new cabinet is acting in accordance with the constitution.

While the circles said that Miqati refuses to bicker with any side over the government impasse, they stressed that the premier-designate “reads the constitution which is clear and has standards that should not be turned into a (political) game.”

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Mustaqbal: Let March 8 Admit It Has Embroiled Country in One-Sided Govt Crisis

The Mustaqbal parliamentary bloc on Tuesday accused the Hizbullah-led March 8 camp of “pushing the country into a dilemma by toppling the government” of Saad Hariri on January 12 and failing to form a new cabinet until the moment.

“It has become necessary and urgent that the March 8 forces admit before their supporters and the Lebanese public opinion that they have embroiled the country in a crisis by deciding to form a one-sided cabinet,” the bloc said in a statement issued after its weekly meeting.

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Berri Meets Asarta: Israel’s Massacre in the South Major Violation of Resolution 1701

Speaker Nabih Berri described on Tuesday the clashes at Maroun al-Ras as an “Israeli massacre in the South.”

He said after holding talks with United Nations Interim Forces in Lebanon Commander General Alberto Asarta: “The massacre is a major violation of U.N. Security Council resolution 1701 and a threat to the security and stability of the region.”

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Aoun: Miqati Unaware of Rules of Government Formation Process

Free Patriotic Movement leader MP Michel Aoun stated on Tuesday that no new developments have taken place in the government formation process.

He said after the movement’s weekly meeting: “There is no desire to form a government or an initiative to facilitate its establishment.”

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Geagea on Nakba Day Clashes: They’re Mistaken if They Believe that that is the Way to Reclaim Palestine

Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea criticized on Tuesday the Nakba Day clashes that erupted on Sunday, noting the sparse military presence at Maroun al-Ras.

He said: “The army and security forces deployed heavily along the entire border, but there were only four or five soldiers at Maroun al-Ras.”

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Preparations Underway for inter-Maronite Summit in Bkirki in June

A joint committee of Maronite bishops and representatives of Christian parties began setting the stage for a large-scale meeting that will bring together the country’s four top Christian leaders and their Maronite lawmakers next month, reported al-Joumhouria daily on Tuesday.

According to the newspaper, Maronite Patriarch Beshara al-Rahi has set June 2 as a preliminary date for the summit. Invitations haven’t yet been sent pending al-Rahi’s return from the Vatican on Thursday.

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Public Schools Teachers, Drivers Unions to Go on Strike in Protest against Political Stalemate

Public school teachers are set to go on strike on Wednesday in protest against the political deadlock in Lebanon, which they fear will serve to increase economic and social problems, reported the pan-Arab daily al-Hayat on Tuesday.

Transportation unions have meanwhile decided to go on general strike on Thursday “in order to achieve the drivers’ legitimate demands”.

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Western Diplomatic Sources Warn Syria Sectarian War Could Spill into Lebanon

Western diplomatic sources have expressed fear that the Syrian uprising would lead to a sectarian war, which could alter the local situation in Lebanon.

It is no secret that the regional situation and the Syrian mutiny in particular are playing a negative role in the Lebanese cabinet formation, the diplomatic circles said.

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Berri Threatens to Solve Political Vacuum by Parliamentary Decisions

Speaker Nabih Berri has discussed with Caretaker Justice Minister Ibrahim Najjar the possibility of resorting to an aspect of parliamentary systems in which the legislature can replace the caretaker cabinet in taking major decisions.

One of the Speaker’s visitors told al-Joumhouria newspaper that Berri is trying to resort to constitutional means that allow the parliament to implement decisions such as extending the tenure of the Central Bank governor, or to judicial means to solve the demands of Roumieh prison inmates and grant some cases a general amnesty.

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