Lebanese Prime Minister Hassan Diab is due to address the nation, in a speech widely expected to officially announce his resignation after over 7 ministers stepped down.
The cabinet formed in January with backing of the powerful Iranian-Hezbollah group and its allies, met on Monday with many ministers saying they wanted to resign. An insider revealed.
Health Minister Hamad Hassan told reporters after a cabinet session on Monday that the country’s embattled government had already resigned. Diab’s televised statement is expected at 7:30pm (16:30 GMT) (12:30pm ET).
There have been boiling Anti government protests in the country’s capital Beirut since Saturday calling for the gov’t resignation following a massive explosion that on Tuesday tore through the capital, Beirut, killing some 200 people and wounding 6,000 others. Lebanon has been in protests since October 2019.
Lebanese president Michel Aoun had earlier said the deadly blast was the result of explosive material that had been stored unsafely for years at the port warehouse. PM Hassan Diab also pledged for thorough investigations in the over 2700 tonnes of ammonium nitrate in the warehouse allegedly reported to be the cause of the explosions.
Earlier on Monday, Justice Minister Marie Claude Najem was the latest minister to announce her resignation while Finance Minister Ghazi Wazni arrived to the cabinet session with his resignation letter but held on to it until after the session.
Information Minster Manal Abdel Samad and Environment and Administrative Development Minister Damianos Kattar – Diab’s closest confidant in the cabinet – resigned on Sunday, citing the explosion and the government’s inability to reform.
Foreign Minister Nassif Hitti had announced his resignation a day before the explosion.
Lebanon’s constitution says that a cabinet is considered resigned if more two-thirds of its original members resign. The youth and sports, telecoms and displaced affairs ministers have said they will announce their resignations from Diab’s 20-minister cabinet if he does not formally announce it.