Analysis - Hariri resignation: Will Lebanon head to edge or a new cabinet within reach now?

Analysis - Hariri resignation: Will Lebanon head to edge or a new cabinet within reach now?

After months of delay to form a new cabinet, Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri of Lebanon on Friday announced his resignation, the second such a failure in a year.

Ahlulbayt News Agency: After months of delay to form a new cabinet, Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri of Lebanon on Friday announced his resignation, the second such a failure in a year. 

He argued that the resignation was in response to a request by President Michel Aoun for "essential changes" in the cabinet makeup. Explaining how the cabinetry members were chosen, Hariri said that the formula adopted for the quota of posts was based on the French plan and the formula proposed by  Nabih Berri, the speaker of parliament. Berri had previously proposed the equal division of posts into three parts so that no spectrum would control the "guaranteeing one-third" and the capability to dissolve the cabinet alone. 

There is no doubt that the critical economic conditions in Lebanon are deteriorating with the non-patriotic view and the opportunism of political groups to take advantage of the current situation to oust rivals and seize power and also advance foreign interventionist agenda. Delay in the new cabinet formation would not be good news for people who were waiting for politicians' actions as the country is teetering on the edge. 

"You cannot ask me to do whatever I can while there is another one who does not want to sacrifice anything. God helps the country,' said Hariri in a televised address hours after resignation. 

Now the question is that what conditions could Hariri stepping down bring to the country, especially when it comes to cabinet formation? 

Hariri game behind the scenes 

A review of Hariri performance since the 2019 protests and his resignation at the time reveals that his Future Party has been striving to benefit from the critical circumstances in the country to corner the rivals, especially Hezbollah, under the ruse of efforts to form a technocratic and non-partisan government. Setting up roadblocks ahead of the cabinet formation process, they have been blaming the rivals for foiling their efforts in a bid to bring the public opinion face to face with Hezbollah and its allies. 

Hariri is taking the same path again. Knowing that absence of him  and March 14 Alliance will foil the efforts for from the government formation, Hariri resigned to put the rivals on a shaky ground in the future negotiations and also decrease the increasing internal and external pressures on him in protest to his political incompetence, especially as a couple of weeks ago a European delegation visited Beirut and threatened that the European Union plans to sanctions politicians obstructing a new cabinet. He said in a televised interview that his party would not take part in the process of forming a future cabinet to send a message to rivals that he would not take effective action to resolve Lebanon's political and then economic crisis without wresting concessions from the opposite side. To this end, he is even ready to destabilize the country. Immediately after his resignation, in a well-organized plot rioters in the name of supporting Hariri took to the streets, disrupting public order and damaging public property. The plan to destabilize Lebanon and drag it into chaos, sectarian strife, and civil war is a plan designed for Lebanon long ago from abroad but has failed with the vigilance of the people, the political parties, in paricular Hezbollah. 

Hariri resignation and the chance for a national agreement 

Although Hariri boycott of the next cabinet will roughen the way to a new government, the political factions especially the Sunnis know that continuation of the current situation will benefit the enemies of Lebanon and harm the Arab country's interests. Hariri is trying to imply to the public that it is only with his presence that the foreign sides will offer Lebanon loans and aids to deal with the heavy financial crisis. But the fact is that the foreign creditors give aids not to a specific person but to a reformed economy where there are austerity measures and monetary discipline. After a new government was formed in 2019 following Hariri resignation, PM Hassan Diab began negotiations with international creditors. 

On the other hand, it can be said that some of the countries claiming patronage to Lebanon, like Saudi Arabia and the US, find economic turbulence the best scenario interfering the country's internal affairs, and thus their promises of help are far from reliable. Given this fact, with Hariri stepping down from the post, grounds for moving out of the months-long limbo are even grow firmer. Actually, the political realities of the cabinet formation can be considered even more effectively.

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