A Lebanese cabinet, headed by Prime Minister Najib Mikati, passed another hurdle today when its ministerial statement was approved. The cabinet was formed in mid June after almost five months of contentious deliberations within the Hezbollah led “March 8” parties.
As part of the Hezbollah led “March 8” coalition the ethnic Armenian Tashnak party were handed two ministerial portfolios; Freije Sabounjian as Minister of Industry and Panos Manajian as Minister of State.
Hezbollah brought down Hariri’s government on January 12 over the Special Tribunal for Lebanon’s (STL) indictment which reportedly has implicated Hezbollah members in the assassination of former PM Rafik Hariri in 2005.
Within the Lebanese Parliament, Lebanon’s ethnic Armenian population maintains six seats; four Armenian Parliamentarians; three SD Hunchakian Party parliamentarians along with the ADL (Ramgavar) parliamentarian constitute the Armenian Reconciliation Bloc and are allied with the pro-western March 14 Forces. The two remaining Armenian parliamentarians are affiliated with the ARF (Tashnak) party and are allied with Hezbollah led “March 8” government.