Lebanese politicians decided to enter into a new crisis that will be added to the series of misfortunes that befell it, from the collapse of the banking system to the accelerating impoverishment of the population, to the repercussions of the Corona epidemic, and the massive explosion of Beirut’s port, and today it has to deal with renewed political tensions.
With this introduction, the French newspaper Le Monde opened an article by Benjamin Bart that recalled the resignation of Mustafa Adib, who was chosen to form the government to succeed the Hassan Diab government that was toppled by the massive Beirut explosion, due to the endless divisions of the local political class.
The writer pointed out to the Prime Minister-designate saying, “I apologize for not being able to continue the task of forming the government,” after pledging to form an “important” government composed of “independent specialists”, in the spirit of the initiative of French President Emmanuel Macron.
The newspaper mentioned that Macron had extracted from the leaders of the Lebanese parties an agreement on a road map aimed at rebuilding the port and extricating the country from the economic recession, in a document that gave the community leaders – who called on the street to bring them down for their negligence and corruption – two weeks to install a new government.
The document listed – according to the author – a list of reforms that must be undertaken, such as auditing the central bank and regulating the electricity sector, before holding the donors ’conference for Lebanon in the second half of October.
The newspaper believes that Adeeb’s resignation threatens to destroy this stimulus schedule, which was presented as the last chance for Lebanon to avoid collapse, and the failure of forming the government has returned to the dispute between the Lebanese Shiite and Sunni formations, which are currently affected by the policy of maximum pressure on Iran by the United States.
Bart explained that the Shiite camp represented by the Amal Movement led by Speaker of Parliament Nabih Berri, and the pro-Iranian Hezbollah demands to keep the Finance Ministry, which it has controlled since 2014, under its hegemony, while Adeeb sees the need to alternate the sovereign portfolios between sects, supported by most Politicians, including the Future Movement, led by former Prime Minister Saad Hariri.
The writer said that all activists and experts agree with this idea, especially since the Amal movement appeared eager in recent months to undermine the financial rescue package for the Hassan Diab government, because Berri personally opposed auditing the Central Bank and approving the Capital Control Law, which are two of the conditions set by the Fund. International criticism to sign an agreement with Lebanon.
In turn, political analyst Camille Najm said, “Berri refuses to open this Wonder Fund to cover his back,” adding that “Amal’s position in finance is to ensure that there are no fundamental reforms.”
However, the principle of inter-sectarian rotation – as the writer says – was not included in Macron’s road map, because Amal and Hezbollah consider that the share of the Shiites in controlling government work – without the Ministry of Finance – is less than the share of the other two main sects in Lebanon.
The writer cautioned that the position of Minister of Finance gives the Shiites a “blocking third” that they demand in governments, because ratification of any decree requires 3 signatures, which are the signature of the President of the Republic, which traditionally goes back to the Maronites, the signature of the Prime Minister, which goes back to the Sunnis, and the signature of the Minister of Finance.
The author explains the bargaining position of the Amal Movement and Hezbollah this time – if they insist on him – that he may return to the US sanctions, especially since Washington imposed sanctions a week after Macron’s visit to Beirut on two Lebanese politicians, one of whom is Ali Hassan Khalil, the right-hand man of Nabih Berri, accused of corruption and collusion with Hezbollah. .
The writer quotes political analyst Joseph Bahout as saying that “Amal and Hezbollah bear responsibility more clearly for Adeeb’s resignation, even though the Sunni side also played a negative role, because its members interpreted the French initiative in their own way, and acted as if they had a blank check in choosing ministers,” Which annoyed the Shiite factions. “
The writer pointed out that the relative ambiguity in the political part of Macron’s initiative, unlike its more detailed economic part, made it easy to kidnap, especially as he called for an “independent collective” formation, but he requested that it receive the widest political coverage.
Bahout warned that the success of Macron’s initiative “required more stringent partial management,” and that Saudi King Salman bin Abdulaziz’s letter to the United Nations General Assembly – in which he said that the port explosion was caused by “Hezbollah’s hegemony” – embarrassed Hariri from showing any Weakness towards the Shiites.
After Adib’s resignation, the UN Special Coordinator for Lebanon, Jan Kubis, who is known for his frankness, said in an angry tweet, “What degree of this irresponsibility and the future of Lebanon and its people are at stake, politicians, have you really sabotaged the unique opportunity that France provides? Cries of people? “