Lebonan

Lebanese figures urge govt. formation

shiitenews_labnane_flagDozens of prominent Lebanese Muslim and Christian religious figures along with other officials have called for the immediate formation of a Lebanonese government.

At a summit, held at the headquarters of the Maronite Christian church on the outskirts of Beirut, the religious figures pointed to the country’s political vacuum,  which has lasted for over three months, calling on Lebanese political leaders to form a new government as quickly as possible, a Press TV correspondent reported on Thursday.

“All political factions should work together to form a government as soon as possible. The future government should act within the framework of the constitution,” said Mohammad Sammak of Christian-Muslim Committee for Dialogue.

In a speech at the opening of the summit, head of the Maronite Church in Lebanon Bshara Arrai emphasized that Lebanon’s religious diversity should be utilized in favor of national and regional interests.

“Dialogue between Christians and Muslims will ensure future cooperation and coexistence. It can also help Lebanon become a role model for regional peace and harmony,” he said.

Lebanon’s political landscape has witnessed major rifts and disputes. Many political observers blame caretaker Premier Saad Hariri for the political uncertainty, labeling him as Saudi Arabia’s main man in Lebanon and even the region.

In late January, Lebanese President Michel Sleiman issued a decree, appointing Hezbollah-backed candidate Najib Mikati as the country’s new prime minister, tasking him with forming a new government.

Mikati’s appointment came following the collapse of Hariri’s government in early January.

Hariri’s administration fell apart after the resignation of eleven ministers from the coalition cabinet in a dispute over the US-backed Special Tribunal for Lebanon (STL) investigating the 2005 assassination of former Lebanese Premier Rafiq Hariri, Saad’s father.

Rafiq Hariri was killed along with more than 20 other people in a massive car bombing in the Lebanese capital of Beirut in February 2005.

According to reports, the US-backed tribunal intends to charge some members of Hezbollah with the Hariri assassination.

Hezbollah, however, has fiercely denied any involvement in the assassination, describing the US-sponsored tribunal as part of an American-Israeli conspiracy against Lebanon.

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