Aoun receives Sayyed in Baabda, Thursday, Nov. 1, 2018. (The Daily Star/Dalati Nohra, HO)
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Tensions have risen between President Michel Aoun and Hezbollah over the formation of a new government, despite both sides playing down the rift, adding a new dimension to the Cabinet stalemate, political sources said Thursday.A group of six Sunni lawmakers backed by Hezbollah who are not affiliated with Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri's Future Movement insist on being represented in the new government, but Aoun said Wednesday night that they did not have a right to representation because they were not part of a unified parliamentary bloc.Nevertheless, Aoun's stance has not altered Hezbollah's resolve on the issue.Aoun will name one Sunni minister after agreeing to allow Hariri to name a Christian minister.This source described the relationship between Aoun and Hezbollah as "strategic," and said it was unharmed by the group impeding on Cabinet formation.Nevertheless, a source close to Hariri commended Aoun's stance on rejecting the six Sunni lawmakers' demand.
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