Lebanon Daily News Brief 06/29/2022

Wednesday, June 29, 2022



June 29th, 2022


PM-Designate Presents New Cabinet Line-Up to President Aoun
According to reports from various TV stations, Prime Minister-Designate Najib Mikati presented an adjusted configuration of the cabinet to President Michel Aoun, which includes some changes to several ministerial positions. [Naharnet]

Group of Migrants Headed for Italy Rescued at Sea by EU Coast Guard, Brought to Greece
Last week, approximately sixty individuals bound for Italy, departing from the Northern coast of Lebanon, were rescued in the Eastern Mediterranean by the European Coast Guard. They were brought to Greece instead and were transferred to the local authorities. [L’Orient Today]

Israeli Defense Minister Claims Iranian-Affiliated Cyber Attack on UNIFIL Activities
According to Reuters, “In what he termed a first public disclosure of the incident, Israeli Defence Minister Benny Gantz said, ‘Iranian security institutions in cooperation with Hezbollah (recently) launched a cyber operation with the aim of stealing materials about UNIFIL activities and deployment in the area, for Hezbollah’s use . . . This is yet another direct attack by Iran and Hezbollah on Lebanese citizens and on Lebanon’s stability,’ he told a cyber conference at Tel Aviv University, without elaborating.” [Reuters]

BDL Staff Protests in Solidarity with Governor Riad Salameh
Yesterday, employees of Lebanon’s central bank staged an all-day protest against ‘the unjust situation against the central bank and its employees’ amid ongoing legal proceedings faced by its Governor, Riad Salameh, who has so far remained uncompliant with numerous legal requests related to two ongoing corruption investigations. [The National]


Malcolm H. Kerr Carnegie Middle East Center
Why Mikati May Be Wasting His Time
Mohanad Hage Ali
Hage Ali writes, “After binding parliamentary consultations to choose Lebanon’s next prime minister, on June 23 Najib Mikati was once again tasked with forming a government. He currently heads a caretaker government, as, constitutionally, his government resigned following the country’s recent parliamentary elections. However, in the consultations, Mikati received the fewest number of votes than any other candidate for prime minister since 1990. Yet he submitted a government lineup on June 30, and remains hopeful—publicly rather than privately—about soon forming a new government, whose main task will be to govern during the period leading up to the presidential election in fall. The government formation process in Lebanon has become an arduous task, often taking many months in a deeply divided country. Mikati is hoping to avoid headaches by making a few changes to his caretaker government. However, if we are to judge by previous efforts, unless President Michel Aoun facilitates the formation process by not prioritizing the interests of his son in law Gebran Bassil, any hope for a quick conclusion is unrealistic, for several reasons.”

Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in these articles are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the position of the American Task Force on Lebanon, a non-profit, nonpartisan leadership organization of Lebanese-Americans.