Lebanese President asks government to pursue serving as care taker

BEIRUT, Lebanese President Michel Aoun on Wednesday asked government of Saad Al-Hariri to pursue serving as a caretaker cabinet.

The Lebanese Presidency, in a statement, cited Article 69 of the Lebanese Constitution, saying that the government is considered no longer in service in case the premier resigned.

Al-Hariri, on Tuesday, tendered his cabinet resignation to the president at a brief reception at the presidential palace in Baabda district, just southeast of Beirut, following 13 days of unabated nationwide protests against deteriorating living conditions and administrative corruption..

The president is expected to issue a decree for holding parliamentary consultations for naming a new premier and forming a new government.

Al-Hariri’s announcement yesterday coincided with violence among activists in downtown Beirut.

Today. the Lebanese media reported that army troops were attempting to reopen roads, blocked by the protestors for more than two weeks.

Tensions have noticeably peaked after Governor of the Central Bank Riad Salameh warned that the country might witness a meltdown if the crisis persists. His remarks coincided with multiple reports affirming that the USD was being traded unofficially at USD 1,800 pounds, jumping from USD 1,500 before the crisis began.

Imposition of new taxes has prompted many cash-strapped Lebanese to protested on a wide scale, having been already haggard with a pile of fees.

Lebanon’s debts have soared to at USD 80 billion. International donors have pledged USD 11 billion in aid if the government tackles corruption and speeds up fundamental reforms.

Source: Kuwait News Agency