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Lebanese president asks PM to stay on as caretaker

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Lebanese president asks PM to stay on as caretaker
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The Lebanese President has asked Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri to lead a caretaker administration after the collapse of his government.

Hezbollah ministers and their cabinet allies have resigned from Hariri’s government.

This over disagreements about a UN-backed tribunal investigating the 2005 killing of Hariri’s father.

The collapse of the government came as Saad al-Hariri was meeting the US President in Washington.

The Lebanese people hope this will not lead to a protracted political crisis.

One man in Beirut said: “I hope a new government will be formed and consultations will take place and the political process will keep going in the political framework and we hope it will not turn into instability or confrontation between the people.”

Anoher man said: “I am optimistic. It is possible that clashes will not occur like others are saying. I feel a new government will be formed.”

The political crisis in Lebanon comes just before indictments are expected to be laid against Hezbollah over the 2005 murder of Rafik al-Hariri.

The Shiite group has always denied any role in the killing, with its leader attacking the UN court as an “Israeli project”.

Saad al-Hariri has refused Hezbollah’s demand to renounce the court.