Aoun, Berri and Hariri cut a cake during a ceremony marking the Lebanese Army s 73rd anniversary in Baabda, Wednesday, Aug. 1, 2018. (The Daily Star/Dalati Nohra, HO)
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President Michel Aoun called Wednesday for the formation of an all-embracing government that would not exclude any faction, saying he was ready to cooperate with Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri to break the Cabinet standoff, now in its third month with no solution in sight. Meanwhile, Hariri met with Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea Wednesday night in the latest flurry of political activity aimed at speeding up the formation of a new government. The meeting, at Hariri's Beirut Downtown residence, discussed latest political developments, particularly the issue of the government formation, the premier-designate's media office said.Aoun's remarks, which came in a speech at a ceremony marking Lebanon's Army Day, appeared to abandon the idea of forming a majority government that would exclude some factions – mainly the Lebanese Forces and the Progressive Socialist Party – whose demands for key ministerial portfolios have been blamed for delaying the formation of a Cabinet.LF ministers and lawmakers have blamed Bassil for the delay in the government formation, accusing him of seeking to prevent the LF from obtaining a significant Cabinet share based on the results of the elections, when the party boosted its representation from eight to 15 MPs.
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