Prime Minister Saad Hariri arrives to attend a Cabinet session in Baabda, Monday, Feb. 19, 2018. (The Daily Star/Mohammad Azakir)
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The Cabinet formation stalemate, now in its third month with no solution in sight, is threatening to plunge the country into an open-ended government crisis with all the negative consequences it entails for the country's stability and struggling economy, political sources said Sunday.Hariri and other Lebanese parties, namely the Lebanese Forces, staunchly oppose any contacts with the regime before a political settlement is reached to end the 7-year-old war in Syria.Jreissati's remarks come as the FPM and the Lebanese Forces, the country's two main Christian parties, are locked in a bitter struggle over the community's representation in the new government.LF ministers and lawmakers have blamed caretaker Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil, the FPM leader, for the Cabinet formation standoff, accusing him of seeking to prevent the LF from obtaining a significant Cabinet share based on the results of the May 6 parliamentary elections, when the party boosted its representation from eight to 15 MPs. MP Mario Aoun, a member of the FPM's parliamentary Strong Lebanon bloc headed by Bassil, accused the LF of obstructing the government formation with its insistence on a sovereign ministry.
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