Wednesday, 4 June 2008

Cabinet—who wants what

Lebanon's Daily Star has the heads-up on the negociations over the new cabinet.

Here's an edited (and revised) version of their report:

Fuad Siniora is attmepting to find a compromise over the distributing the different portfolios in the next cabinet.

Apparently Michel Aoun has presented a "huge basket of demands". The head of the Free Patriotic Movement wants the minstries of finance, health, public works, social affairs, and either industry or agriculture.

Four of these are in the are in the highly coveted service sector.

Apparently who gets what is dividing friend and foe alike.

According to the Al-Safir daily, Qatari officials stepped in to help overcome the hurdles, and will follow up with a visit if the talks stall.

Meanwhile president Michel Sleiman denied earlier reports that some "foreign parties" were pressuring him to nominate "certain people" for cabinet jobs.

Sleiman told a delegation of Arab ambassadors that, "There is no party that can pressure [the Presidential Palace in] Baabda ... We are only ready to move under the pressure of national and Arab interests."

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