Public uproar over blast forces Lebanon PM to step down
BEIRUT (LEBANON) – Lebanese Prime Minister Hassan Diab tendered his resignation on Monday, saying that the devastating explosion in Beirut and the public outrage resulted from deep-rooted corruption.
“Today we follow the will of the people in their demand to hold accountable those responsible for the disaster that has been in hiding for seven years,” Diab said while announcing his resignation.
Diab blamed the disaster on endemic corruption, adding that those responsible should be ashamed as their actions have led to a catastrophe “beyond description”.
“I said before that corruption is rooted in every lever of the state but I have discovered that corruption is greater than the state,” he said, referring to a political elite opposing reforms.
His resignation is likely to intensify the political turmoil and hamper the stalled discussions with the IMF regarding a financial bailout plan.
The discussions, which had started in May, were put on hold because of lack of initiative to root out corruption and the dispute between the government, banks and politicians over the extent of financial losses.
President Michel Aoun accepted Diab’s resignation and requested his government to continue as the caretaker until a new cabinet is formed.
(Photos syndicated via Reuters)
This story has been edited by BH staff and is published from a syndicated field