Minister Ali Hasan Khalil, right, speaks with MP Ghazi Youssef at the Parliament in Beirut, Friday, April 11, 2014. (The Daily Star/Mahmoud Kheir)
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The salaries of public sector employees are hanging in the balance as Future Movement lawmakers and Finance Minister Ali Hasan Khalil bicker over extra-budgetary spending with no end in sight.Future MPs accused Khalil of breaking the law, blaming him for the deadlock in paying public sector employees and arguing that the treasury had the necessary funds.Khalil has refused to authorize extra-budgetary spending for civil servants unless the draft state budget for 2014 he prepared was approved.Former Prime Minister Najib Mikati's government resolved the issue by approving extra-budgetary spending of LL8.9 trillion (nearly $6 billion) for 2011 .During the news conference, Youssef said the funds allocated for the salaries of civil servants – based on the 2005 state budget in addition to a wage hike approved in 2011 – were an estimated LL2.66 trillion, which he said was available.Youssef also claimed that Khalil had used some of the funds earmarked for salaries to finance the wage hike for 2014 .
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