Lebanese president postpones consultations to name new prime minister

Beirut (dpa) - Lebanese President Michel Aoun postponed parliamentary consultations for naming a new prime minister at a request from Saad Hariri, the only candidate for the post.

  The binding consultations scheduled for Monday are now delayed until Thursday, the presidency said in a statement.
The postponement comes in response to "Premier Hariri's wish to allow for more consultations on the issue of forming the government," the statement said.
Lebanon has been hit by nationwide protests since October 17, leading to the resignation of Saad Hariri as prime minister almost two weeks later.
Protesters have called for a government of technocrats, rather than politicians from the ruling class, to help revive the country's  battered economy.
Aoun was due to hold talks with various parliamentary blocs following two nights of heavy clashes between anti-government protesters and riot police.
According to the Lebanese constitution, the president has to consult with parliamentary blocs before he tasks a premier with forming a new government.
In Lebanon, the president should be a Christian Maronite, the prime minister a Sunni Muslim and the Parliamentary Speaker a Shiite Muslim.
Hariri is likely to be named again but not with a high number of votes. Protesters have rejected the ex-premier heading the new the government.

Monday, December 16th 2019

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