Al-Rahi Says Won’t Stop His Government Formation Contacts

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Maronite Patriarch Beshara al-Rahi announced Sunday that he will not cease his mediation regarding the new government despite the ongoing deadlock.

“Over the past four days, I considered it my duty as a patriarch to carry out efforts in various directions to push forward the cabinet formation process, out of my sense of the plights of our brothers and sons in Lebanon… and out of fear over the collapse of state institutions,” al-Rahi said in his Sunday Mass sermon.

“In all the contacts that I conducted, which I will not stop, I did not find a single reason that deserves that the government be delayed over it even for a single day,” the patriarch added, noting that his decision to mediate was a “personal initiative.”

Commenting on President Michel Aoun and Free Patriotic Movement chief Jebran Bassil’s insistence on the adoption of “unified standards” in the formation process, al-Rahi said: “If there are standards, they are all secondary, except for the standards of the constitution and the National Pact.”

“We want a government in which there are no quotas, personal calculations, counter-conditions or a blocking one-third that impeded its decisions,” the patriarch added.

“We want it to be a nonpolitical and nonpartisan government whose ministers would be figures who are known in the civil society,” he said.

He also added that the government should be formed “according to the spirit of the constitution and through a spirit of consultation and clear intentions between the PM-designate and the president, in the framework of accord, partnership and the principle of the rotation of portfolios according to Article 95 of the constitution.”

SourceNaharnet

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