Jumblatt Deals A Blow To Prime Minister Najib Mikati

Sawt Beirut International

Walid Jumblatt, leader of the Progressive Socialist Party (PSP), surprised everyone on Wednesday, June 22nd, when he announced that his parliamentary bloc will not support Najib Mikati for prime minister.

Mikati, who has been Lebanon’s prime minister since September of last year, still maintains the biggest support in the parliament for the prime minister position.

Amal, Hezbollah, and the Future Movement-backed Parliamentary Gathering of the North have insisted on choosing Mikati.

Therefore, as it currently stands, Mikati will receive around 40 votes on Thursday. On the other hand, former ambassador Nawaf Salam has around 30.

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Judge Salam is backed by PSP as well as Kataeb and their independent allies. Opposition MPs are still discussing who to support with claims arguing that judge Salam is likely to gain their support.

Opposition party Taqaddom has already announced that their MPs, Najat A. Saliba and Mark Daou, will back judge Salam.

The positions of the Lebanese Forces (LF) and the Free Patriotic Movement (FPM) remain unchanged. Both parties refuse to choose either of the two candidates.

This leaves around 20 votes in the parliament with an unknown outcome, making it nearly impossible for either candidate to gain a comfortable majority.

Related: Lebanon Has A Problem Selecting The Next Prime Minister, Here’s What We Know.

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Jumblatt Deals A Blow To Prime Minister Najib Mikati

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