President Michel Aoun Meets Minister of Defense Yaacoub Sarraf. Dalati Nohra
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The first session of Cabinet in the New Year set to be held this week will likely be overshadowed by a mounting dispute between President Michel Aoun and Speaker Nabih Berri over the signing of a decree promoting a number of Army officers.The Cabinet session comes against the backdrop of the escalating feud between Aoun and Berri over the decree signed by the president, Prime Minister Saad Hariri and Defense Minister Yaacoub Sarraf promoting a number of Army officers who served under Aoun in the late 1980s when he was the Army commander, sidestepping the need for the finance minister's approval.Amid the unyielding positions of both Aoun and Berri on the decree dispute, Hariri stepped in in an attempt to find a solution that would please the two leaders. Speaking to reporters during a tour of security headquarters and the Beirut Downtown district on the eve of the New Year Sunday night, Hariri sounded optimistic about finding a solution to the decree crisis.The prime minister said he was mediating between Aoun and Berri over the disputed decree.
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