After failing to form a government for over the past 8 months, on Thursday Lebanon Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri stepped down. Following a brief meeting with President Michel Aoun at Baabda Palace Hariri resigned, as per a report released by Al Jazeera.
While his office declined to comment to Al Jazeera, in a television interview later on Thursday, Hariri shall reportedly talk about failed government formation efforts.
Despite diplomatic pressure from the United States, France, and Saudi Arabia, the political deadlock has been persistent since his reappointment the previous October. Implementing sanctions on Lebanese officials has been threatened by the European Union.
A 24 Minister government provided Michel with around 8 ministers which included ministers from defense and foreign ministries, as mentioned by the local media, was proposed by Hariri on Wednesday.
Over the size and distribution of a new government, Hariri has been at odds with Michel. Hariri’s proposal of dismissing the countries sectarian-based power-sharing system and lacking Christian representation was accused by Michel, while he was accused by Hariri of wanting too large of a share in the government.
Following countrywide anti-government protests, after resigning in October 2019, Hariri was reappointed a year later vowing to put together a government that would help to enact economic reforms. Pushing more than half of its population into poverty and devaluing its local currency by around 90%, Lebanon has struggled with an economic crisis since late 2019.