Conflicting Reports Emerge on Govt. Formation Efforts

Lebanon's Prime Minister Saad Hariri gives a press conference during the Lebanon International Support Group meeting in Paris, on December 8, 2017. / AFP PHOTO / ALAIN JOCARD

Conflicting reports emerged Wednesday evening on whether or not the current government formation efforts have made progress.

Sources close to Hizbullah secretary-general’s assistant Hussein Khalil, Hizbullah official Wafiq Safa and Speaker Nabih Berri’s aide Ali Hassan Khalil told al-Manar TV that the trio’s meeting with Free Patriotic Movement chief Jebran Bassil on Tuesday evening was “positive.”

“The most important things in it were frankness, transparency and the progress in the efforts,” the sources added.

The sources said the meeting tackled three points: the distribution of portfolios, the naming of the two additional Christian ministers and whether or not the Strong Lebanon bloc would grant the government its confidence.

“As for the naming of the two Christian ministers, ideas that can contribute to reaching a settlement were discussed,” the sources added, noting that the confidence vote issue would be discussed with Bassil upon reaching an agreement on the first two points.

MTV meanwhile said that the “positive reports” about the government formation efforts are not accurate, adding that PM-designate Saad Hariri “has not responded positively” to the ongoing negotiations.



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