No Cabinet this Week as Miqati Sees Positive Signs in March 14 Speeches

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Premier-designate Najib Miqati’s circles said speeches made on ex-Premier Rafik Hariri’s sixth assassination anniversary had some positive signs that are “consistent with Miqati’s approach.”

The circles told An Nahar daily in remarks published Tuesday that the speeches of Caretaker Premier Saad Hariri, Phalange party leader Amin Gemayel, Lebanese Forces chief Samir Geagea and former minister Mohammed Abdul Hamid Baidoun at the BIEL rally were consistent with Miqati’s “conviction on the need for dialogue and moderation.”

The circles “hoped that the positive statements would lead to compliance with the invitation that the premier-designate made for the (March 14’s) participation in the cabinet.”

They also hoped that March 14 would “deal positively” with Miqati’s offer of extending his hand to the alliance to form the government.

The circles rejected to snap back at accusations, saying Miqati stresses that the Lebanese need an active cabinet which should stay away from bickering.

Meanwhile, An Nahar said that the premier-designate visited President Michel Suleiman on Monday to discuss with him the cabinet formation process.

Miqati also met with Caretaker Energy Minister Jebran Bassil who informed the premier-designate about the portfolios and names that Free Patriotic Movement leader Michel Aoun is asking for.

The premier-designate also held talks with Hussein Khalil and Ali Hassan Khalil, who are respectively the assistants of the Hizbullah leader and the speaker.

Officials who took part in the meetings ruled out to An Nahar the formation of the cabinet this week, saying consultations need more time.

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