Sep 10, 2021 - World

Lebanon forms new government, ending yearlong deadlock

Picture of Najib Mikati

Najib Mikati. Photo: Popow/ullstein bild via Getty Images

Lebanese President Michel Aoun on Friday announced the creation of the new government, with billionaire businessman Najib Mikati serving as the country's prime minister.

Why it matters: Lebanon has been without a government for more than a year, exacerbating its devastating economic crisis.

State of play: The decree forming a new government was signed by Aoun and Mikati in the presence of Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri.

  • The new Cabinet consists of 24 ministers headed by Mikati, AP reports.
  • Mikati, who has been prime minister twice before, was named prime minister-designate and tasked with forming a new government in July after receiving enough votes from parliamentarians.

What he's saying: "I hope that we will rise with this government and at least stop the current collapse and restore Lebanon to its pride and prosperity," Mikati said.

  • "I pledge to hold the parliamentary elections on time," he added.

Catch up quick: Lebanon has not had a working government since Hassan Diab's Cabinet resigned days after a deadly explosion in August 2020 killed more than 200 people and left roughly 250,000 homeless.

  • Since then, the country has descended into further economic chaos, per AP.
  • "Since fall 2019, the national currency has lost more than 90 percent of its value against the dollar, unemployment has spread, businesses have closed and prices have skyrocketed," the New York Times writes.
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