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Hariri’s Future Movement, the powerful Iranian-backed Shi’ite party Hezbollah and the Progressive Socialist Party led by Druze politician Walid Jumblatt were among the first groups to nominate Adib in formal consultations hosted by President Michel Aoun on Monday.
Aoun, a Maronite Christian, must designate the candidate with greatest support among lawmakers. Aoun’s Christian Free Patriotic Movement will also nominate Adib.
The Lebanese Forces, a Christian group, looked like it would be the only major party not to support him. It backed another ambassador, Nawaf Salam, a choice strongly opposed by Hezbollah.
On top of the economic crisis, sectarian tensions erupted last week in a deadly shootout between Sunni and Shi’ites south of Beirut.
KEEPING UP THE PRESSURE
Macron, who meets Lebanese politicians in Beirut on Tuesday, made a series of phone calls to Lebanese leaders at the weekend that were vital to securing the consensus on Adib.
“It was the pressure of his calls to everyone, the pressure of his coming to Lebanon, the pressure of everyone not wanting to upset him,” a senior Lebanese politician said, adding that “no one can afford a long process” to agree a new government.
In the past, forming a new government has taken months of political horse trading.
A French presidency source said Macron’s demands “are clear: a government of mission, clean, efficient, able to implement the necessary reforms in Lebanon and therefore able to receive strong international support.”