Despite all initiatives, internal and external, the total sum of progress on the governmental formation front has so far amounted to zero. According to sources by “Al-Joumhouriyah”, 4 nightly meetings were held over 2 days between Bassil and Hezbollah on the one hand, and between Hariri and Berri on the other. All efforts collided as it appeared, according to “Al-Joumhouriyah” sources, that no one wanted to form a cabinet. As a result, its ‘Dowry’ has now become too hefty. The outcome of these negotiations was that 2 parties agreed on a cabinet of 24 ministers, but no longer divided by 3. Instead, the President’s party along with the Dashnaks would name 8 ministers with the rest being divided upon the rest of the political forces according to their representation. This is following changes in the political landscape caused by shifts in alliances. It was also revealed that Bassil was attempting to negotiate assigning 10 ministers for his side within the 24-member cabinet which would mean obtaining a sole veto minority, also known as a “blocking third”.
In turn, the “Anbaaonline” considered that we are still on the path of disrupting initiatives for governmental formation. This was following a harsh statement by David Hale directed towards obstructionists saying that: “The time for formation has come, not obstruction. Now is the time for comprehensive reform. Those who continue to obstruct the reformative agenda are risking their relationship with the United States and its partners and are risking punitive measures against them.”
Close sources also considered that Hale’s statement can be considered as strong indicator that the US administration is paying attention to the Lebanese situation; otherwise, these statement about the government formation and the maritime borders wouldn’t have been made. However, sources added that the bulk of external communications will not lead to any positive local development unless stakeholders at home take the correct initiatives and end the stalling taking hold of the countries last breaths. They also indicated that the parties responsible for delaying the formation are all waiting for regional developments in their favor to occur, and that only then would they take a step forward in that direction.