Speaker Nabih Berri speaks to visitors during his weekly meeting with lawmakers on Jan. 10, 2018. (The Daily Star/ Mohammad Azakir.)
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Speaker Nabih Berri reassured the Lebanese Wednesday that the Cabinet would stay in office, ruling out the resignation of his ministers for now. However, he noted that the government's functions could be paralyzed as a result of his escalating disputes with President Michel Aoun and Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil.Education Minister Marwan Hamadeh, from MP Walid Jumblatt's bloc, who unexpectedly attended the Ain al-Tineh meeting in a show of solidarity with Berri in his feud with Aoun over the officers' decree, took a direct jab at the president by declaring that Lebanon was a democratic parliamentary republic, rather than a country governed by "a presidential system".Jumblatt, the leader of the Progressive Socialist Party and an ally of Berri, has taken the speaker's side in the dispute with Aoun over the officers' decree.Aoun's appeal Tuesday to the FPM, which he founded, and the Amal Movement, led by Berri, to forgive each other following the row over Bassil's "thug" remark has failed to ease the crisis.
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