Mustaqbal, PSP, LF ‘Won’t Join Govt. Not Led by Hariri,’ Mahfoud Says
In light of reports claiming the President would replace the Premier if he rejects a 32-minister government proposal, head of the Change Movement Elie Mahfoud warned on Friday that al-Mustaqbal Movement, the Progressive Socialist Party and the Lebanese Forces “would not take part in a government not led by PM-designate Saad Hariri.”
“Moving the government crisis into Hariri’s arena to make him look responsible for the obstacle has been a relentless endeavor (by many) since his designation. Hizbullah spares no opportunity to doubt the man’s efforts,” said Mahfoud in tweets.
Referring to a “series of obstacles” placed in front of Hariri’s mission to lineup the cabinet, he added: “The crisis did not start with pro-Hizbullah Sunni MPs, and it will definitely not end with him embracing the Chouf (Jahliyeh) incident.”
“Harassing Hariri to push him out will not resolve the crisis,” said Mahfoud.
“Al-Mustaqbal Movement will not participate in a government not led by Hariri which will leave the Sunni majority outside the government structure,” he stated, adding the “Lebanese Forces and the PSP, are likely to halt participation without their historical ally.”
On Thursday, President Michel Aoun’s visitors quoted him as saying that should Hariri reject a 32-minister proposal then his replacement will be ready to be tasked with forming the new government.
An obstacle related to the representation of pro-Hizbullah Sunni MPs has been delaying the formation of the new cabinet for several weeks now after the so-called Christian and Druze hurdles were resolved.
The parties are currently mulling a new proposal under which a 32-minister government would be formed instead of one comprising thirty members. This would give Hariri a Alawite seat in return for him giving up a Sunni seat to the pro-Hizbullah MPs.