Acting Lebanese prime minister Mustapha Adib steps down, deepening political crisis

The parliamentary factions will have to agree on a new candidate to take over negotiations.

Lebanon is reeling from an ongoing economic collapse that was made worse by a disastrous port explosion in August. The blast, caused by improperly stored ammonium nitrate, killed nearly 200 people and brought about the collapse of the previous government.

But efforts by the relatively unknown Adib to broker an agreement over the distribution of the ministerial portfolio stalled amid factional fighting. Among the sticking points, the country’s leading Shiite Muslim groups, Amal and the armed militant group Hezbollah insisted on controlling the Finance Ministry.

Adib, who had tried to persuade political leaders to rally around a slate of independent experts to tackle the country’s economic crisis, said he was unable to broker the impasse.

“I present my honest apologies to the Lebanese people, who have suffered and are suffering,” Adib said.

Adib, a Sunni

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