Consultations to appoint new Lebanon PM to begin Monday

AFP, Thursday 13 Jan 2011

Lebanon's parliament speaker Nabih Berri on Thursday announced that consultations on appointing a new prime minister would begin on Monday, following the collapse of the national unity government

Lebanese opposition ministers
Lebanese opposition ministers announce their ministerial resignation during a news conference in Rabieh (Photo: Reuters)


"Consultations with parliamentarians will begin Monday at noon (1000 GMT)," the state-run National News Agency quoted Berri as saying.

The announcement came a day after Hezbollah forced the collapse of Prime Minister Saad Al-Hariri's government in a dispute over a UN-backed probe into the assassination of Hariri's father, ex-premier Rafiq Al-Hariri.

Eleven ministers withdrew from the government, providing the minimum number of resignations needed to automatically dissolve the 30-member cabinet, now acting in a caretaker capacity.

The Special Tribunal for Lebanon is reportedly set to indict high-ranking Hezbollah operatives in the 2005 assassination of Hariri.

The Shia resistance group has warned any such accusation would have grave repercussions and has been pressing Western-backed Hariri to disavow the tribunal.

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