Aoun receives Hariri in Baabda, Monday, Nov. 28, 2016. (The Daily Star/Dalati Nohra, HO)
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It was Aoun's first public comment on the Cabinet standoff since he designated former Prime Minister Saad Hariri on Nov. 3 to form a new government.Caretaker Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil also played down difficulties facing Hariri in his attempts to set up a national accord Cabinet, saying he expected a government to be formed soon.Bassil, the leader of the Free Patriotic Movement, said efforts are underway to form a 24-member national unity government comprising of all the feuding parties, including the Marada Movement, the Kataeb Party, the Syrian Social Nationalist Party and Sunni politicians belonging to the Hezbollah-led March 8 alliance.Hezbollah chief Sayyed Hasan Nasrallah is expected to touch on the Cabinet formation crisis and probably make proposals for ending the five-week-long standoff in a televised speech Friday at 8:30 p.m. Hezbollah, which is allied with the FPM and the Marada Movement, was reported to be seeking to resolve differences over the Cabinet formation.Bassil also lauded the FPM's understanding with the Lebanese Forces.It said that the Lebanese can no longer tolerate the continued Cabinet vacuum.
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