Lebanon’s Government Set to Resign, Minister Announces, After Beirut Blast

Lebanon’s Government Set to Resign, Minister Announces, After Beirut Blast

Lebanon’s Government Set to Resign, Minister Announces, After Beirut Blast

Lebanon’s Government Set to Resign, Minister Announces, After Beirut Blast

BEIRUT, Lebanon — Lebanon’s cabinet was set to resign on Monday, the health minister said, a move that could open a new political void as the country struggles to recover from a massive explosion last week that ravaged swaths of the capital.

The minister, Hamad Hassan, announced the decision to reporters after a cabinet meeting but before the Prime Minister Hassan Diab had officially informed President Michel Aoun. No other ministers confirmed that information, but three of the Cabinet’s 20 members had already resigned.

“The whole government resigned,” Mr. Hassan told reporters, adding that Mr. Diab would go to the presidential palace and “hand over the resignation in the name of all the ministers.”

Mr. Diab, in office since January, was expected to address the nation later on Monday.

The explosion on Tuesday unleashed death and destruction on Beirut as it tore through the capital, killing more than 150 people, injuring thousands and adding new fuel to popular anger at the country’s political elite for what many consider decades of corruption and mismanagement.

Lebanese officials have said the blast occurred when a fire ignited 2,750 tons of ammonium nitrate, a chemical used to make fertilizer and bombs, that had been stored in the Beirut port since 2014, despite warnings from a number of officials that it was dangerous.

Many in Lebanon considered the blast the latest manifestation of poor governance that had also caused a major economic crisis.


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