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Lebanon: Aoun-Berri meeting ends suspended government negotiations

Lebanese President Michel Aoun (C) meets United States Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs David Hale (4th L) at the Baabda Palace in Beirut, Lebanon on 14 August 2020. [Lebanese Presidency / Handout - Anadolu Agency]
Lebanese President Michel Aoun (C) meets United States Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs David Hale (4th L) at the Baabda Palace in Beirut, Lebanon on 14 August 2020. [Lebanese Presidency / Handout - Anadolu Agency]

The London-based newspaper Al-Sharq Al-Awsat has announced that Wednesday's meeting between Lebanese Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri and President Michel Aoun put an end to the suspended government negotiations prevailing over the past two days.

They are waiting for the release of a ruling by the United Nations Special Tribunal for Lebanon.

The newspaper reported, based on reliable sources, that Berri proposed the reappointment of former Prime Minister Saad Hariri to head the Council of Ministers.

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The sources emphasised that "The case has to be closely scrutinised in order to avoid complications and disagreements over the next move. Therefore, it was agreed that talks will be resumed between the two parties within 48 hours to follow up on certain points and to clarify things before scheduling a date for parliamentary consultations to nominate a prime minister."

After further negotiations, the reporter confirmed to the newspaper that "in all of his meetings, Berri openly stressed his view that Hariri is the most important figure required at this point to hinder any attempt to stir up sedition, and that was clear in the meetings he held and that he is currently holding with Lebanese officials and foreign delegates".

The sources also highlighted the vigorous effort made to ensure a breakthrough next week before the return of French President Emmanuel Macron to Beirut at the beginning of next month, at least to set a date for parliamentary consultations to appoint a prime minister.

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