Jul 24, 2021 08:34 UTC
  • Mikati set to be designated to form new Lebanese government: Report

Billionaire businessman and former Lebanese Prime Minister Najib Mikati is set to be designated to form a new government next week, with President Michel Aoun planning to consult with parliamentary blocs amid an economic crisis.

According to Press TV, political sources familiar with the matter said Aoun is going to hold consultations with parliamentary blocs on Monday to poll them on their choice for a new prime minister.

The consultations will take place more than a week after Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri stepped down after failing for the past eight months to form a government.

“Behind-the-scene contacts made between various political blocs have indicated that former Premier Najib Mikati is the most favorite candidate to be named to form a new government during the binding parliamentary consultations,” an informed source told Lebanon’s English-language newspaper The Daily Star on condition of anonymity.

Local media said there are at least four leading candidates, namely Mikati, former Prime Minister Tammam Salam, lawmaker and former Minister of Youth and Sports Faisal Karami, and Lebanon’s former Representative at the United Nations Nawaf Salam.

Mikati, nevertheless, appears to be the favorite candidate. He reportedly has the support of Lebanese Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri’s Amal Movement, as well as political parties of the Progressive Socialist Party, the Marada Movement, the Syrian Social Nationalist Party, and some independent legislators.

Berri, in coordination with Hariri, is said to be seeking to promote Mikati as a consensus candidate to form a new government.

Lebanon has been mired since late 2019 in a deep economic and financial crisis, exacerbated by a political deadlock.