Still stalling: Lebanese interim PM admits failed efforts

Published July 8th, 2013 - 10:07 GMT
Lebanese parliament (Source: AFP file photo)
Lebanese parliament (Source: AFP file photo)

Lebanese Prime Minister-designate Tammam Salam said Monday his efforts to form his government had yet to bear any results and said the unfavorable option of resignation was still available to him.

“There is no progress but this will not prevent me from seeking to form the Cabinet,” Salam said after meeting with President Michel Sleiman at Baabda Palace for talks.

“I have already said that I do not wish to wait long and make the country wait ... I hope that the patience of people for a Cabinet that can run their affairs does not run out,” he added.

Salam warned that stepping down was still an option. But he ruled out resignation at the present time.

“Stepping down is one of the options but I never said I intend to go for [this choice], I hope to be able to pick the option that will benefit the country,” he added.

The prime minister-designate also said he was holding on to his 24-memebr Cabinet lineup that would see an equal distribution of portfolios between the March 8, March 14, and centrists, and in which no political party is granted veto power.

“I am still holding on to my stances and I seek to form a Cabinet in which everyone takes part and no one has the power to obstruct its tasks,” he said.

The Cabinet formation process has been stalled for over three months because of conditions and counter-conditions from the rival March 8 and March 14 coalitions.

The Hezbollah-led March 8 has demanded veto power in a political Cabinet while the March 14 group has called for a neutral government that excludes political partisans.

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