Lebanese PM-designate backed by Russia in forming Cabinet

Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov.

Moscow, (Asian independent)┬áRussian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said that Moscow supports Lebanese Prime Minister-designate Saad Hariri in forming a new Cabinet, a statement released by the latter’s office said.

“Russia supports Prime Minister Hariri’s efforts to form a cabinet capable of dealing with the current crisis and receiving support from Arab and foreign countries,” Lavrov was quoted as saying during his meeting with Hariri in Moscow on Friday.

The statement noted that Hariri wrapped up his visit to Russia after discussing with officials in Moscow the obstacles hindering cabinet formation in Lebanon and the impact of political deadlock on the local economy, Xinhua news agency reported.

The statement added that Hariri also discussed with Russian officials the return of Syrian refugees to their homeland and the possibility of receiving doses of Sputnik V Covid-19 vaccines for the fight against the pandemic.

Hariri’s advisor on Russian affairs George Chaaban said that Moscow has also expressed its readiness to contribute to developmental projects in Lebanon, namely in the fields of electricity, infrastructure reconstruction, and reconstruction of the Beirut port destroyed by blasts on August 4, 2020.

He started his official visit to Russia on Wednesday.

This is the third time that Hariri has been designated as the Lebanese Prime Minister.

He resigned in 2019 after nationwide protests that blame the ruling class for causing the country’s collapse.

Hariri was appointed Prime Minister for the third time in October 2020, but has been unable to form a cabinet since then in the light of his differences with President Michel Aoun on the form and nature of his cabinet.