Lebanon launches new quest for PM

Beirut (AFP) –


Lebanese President Michel Aoun officially launched consultations Thursday to find a new prime minister, nearly a month after the previous appointee failed to form a government.

The frontrunner is none other than Saad Hariri, who already held the position twice and resigned a year ago under pressure from an unprecedented protest movement demanding a complete overhaul of Lebanon's political system.

The presidency announced on social media that Aoun had begun meeting the representatives of the parliamentary blocs to decide on a nominee.

A relatively unknown diplomat, Mustapha Adib, was nominated in late August following the resignation of his predecessor Hassan Diab's government in the aftermath of a deadly explosion at Beirut port.

Adib had vowed to form a cabinet of experts, in line with conditions set by French President Emmanuel Macron to help rescue the corruption-ridden country from its worst ever economic crisis.

He faced resistance from some of the main parties however and threw in the towel nearly a month later, leaving Lebanon rudderless to face soaring poverty and the aftermath of its worst peacetime disaster.