The government of Prime Minister-designate Najib Mikati was born on Friday, a year after the vacuum caused by serious political divisions and which helped deepen an unprecedented economic crisis that has lasted for two years in Lebanon.
And waiting for the missions Difficult Mikati government, which will not be able to ensure “magical” solutions It puts an end to the daily suffering of the Lebanese due to the repercussions of an economic collapse that the World Bank has ranked among the worst in the world since 1850.
On Friday, the US welcomed the formation of the government, calling for “urgent measures” to reform the battered economy.
“The United States welcomes the announcement that Lebanese leaders have agreed to form a new government led by Prime Minister-designate Najib Mikati, which gives hope in urgent action to meet the urgent needs and legitimate aspirations of the Lebanese people, “State Department spokesman Ned Price said.
United Nations Secretary General Antonio Guterres called the formation of the government a “very important step”.
French President Emmanuel Macron also “welcomed” the formation of the government, and said: “This is an indispensable step to take the emergency measures that the Lebanese are waiting for to get their country out of the deep crisis. in where it is located. “
Cabinet Secretary General Mahmoud Makiya read the decree to form the government, which included 24 ministers, most of whom had never entered in politics, but some of them are known for their achievements in economic, medical, cultural and gods fields media.
Although most of them do not openly belong to any political current, they have been nominated by important political parties and leaders, which makes them affiliated with them, according to analysts and politicians.
The birth of the government came 13 months after the resignation of the government of Hassan Diab, in following the terrible explosion in the port of Beirut on 4 August 2020, which killed more than two hundred people, injured more than 6,500 and destroyed neighborhoods in the capital, exacerbating the suffering of the Lebanese, of whom 78% live today, below the poverty line.
The ministers included specialists such as Health Minister Firas Abyad, who led, through Rafic Hariri University Hospital, efforts to tackle the Covid-19 epidemic, and the professor Nasser Yassin, director of the Crisis Observatory at the American University.
It also includes two former ambassadors, Abdullah Abu Habib (foreign minister) and Najla Riachy (minister of administrative development), the only woman in the government. In addition to the journalist George Al-Qardahi.
The new government will hold its first session before noon next Monday.
Mikati, 65, a wealthy businessman from the city of Tripoli (north), charged with forming the government on July 26, gave a speech from the Republican Palace in to whom he spoke of the crisis of medicine and electricity and the absence of a future horizon, and he seemed moved and weeping. He invited everyone to collaborate, stressing that the government does not want to precipitate politicization.
“I will contact international bodies to ensure the simpler matters in life,” he said, adding: “We will not miss an opportunity without knocking on the doors of the Arab world.”
They are all corrupt
In the first comment on the formation of the government, President Michel Aoun felt, according to the Twitter account of the presidency, that “the government is the best that can be achieved and it is in able to function, “he added,” Our concerns lie in the priority of solving people’s current problems and we have great responsibilities. “
On the street, exhausted by the repercussions of the collapse, many do not place their hopes in the birth of the government.
“I’m not optimistic about the government or the country,” Rooney, 18, told AFP. “If I get the chance, I’ll travel.”
He added: “Many people came before him (Mikati) and did nothing … They are all corrupt. I cut the hope out of the country.”
Despite the international pressure exerted by France in in particular, political differences over the form of the government and the distribution of seats have prevented its creation in recent months, despite two previous attempts to form it after the explosion of the port.
The President of the Republic appointed Mikati, after the apology of the Sunni leader Saad Hariri, head of the Future Movement, for not having formed him nine months after his appointment.
Following his resignation, Hariri accused Iran, the main supporter of Hezbollah, the most important political and military force in Lebanon, of “interrupting” the birth of the government.
Before Hariri, Ambassador Mustafa Adib, charged with forming the government at the end of August 2020, apologized for not completing the post.
The government appears to be the result of a consensus between Mikati, Aoun, Hezbollah and its ally, the Amal Movement, led by the Speaker of the Parliament Nabih Berri.
In this context, Mikati said: “We cannot bring specialists alone” into the government, without “they have affiliations … and I can deal with current problems”, referring to the political coverage that the government should enjoy to make fatal decisions.
It is up to the new government to quickly reach an agreement with the International Monetary Fund as a first step to get Lebanon out of its crisis, characterized by lack of liquidity and severe fuel and electricity crises that are reflected in all aspects of life.
It should also prepare for the parliamentary elections scheduled for May, which the international community wishes to complete on schedule.
EU Foreign Minister Josep Borrell, who has waved sanctions against politicians responsible for the government stalemate, welcomed the formation of the government as “the key to addressing the current economic, financial and social crisis, implementing long-awaited reforms and preparing for 2022 “. elections “.
The UN special coordinator for Lebanon, Joanna and Ronika, also considered the announcement of the formation of the government “the first step”. “Now we need swift and courageous steps in the public interest to initiate economic and governance reforms and prepare for elections in time, “he said.
“It is time to ease the burdens of the Lebanese people,” he added.
For more than a year, the international community has tied its provision of any financial support to the formation of a committed specialist government in radical reforms. He was content to wait to provide urgent humanitarian aid, without going through the official institutions.
Researcher and university professor Sami Nader believes that the government has practically “only one address to turn to, which is the International Monetary Fund, because there is no other via out of crisis “.
He added: “If the logic that prevailed in the process of forming the government in terms of quotas will dominate the government’s performance, the issue is not at all a good omen “, noting that” the continuation of the quota logic and the fight over every reform and every decision means that we will remain in the same place in we were with the provisional government. “
And he continues, “the cooks themselves (the political class) are the ones who formed the government … The real fear is that the new government’s operating system will fail to produce something new.”
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