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22 Jan, 2020 13:39

Lebanon faces a ‘catastrophe,’ new PM Diab says

Lebanon faces a ‘catastrophe,’ new PM Diab says

Prime Minister Hassan Diab said on Wednesday that Lebanon faces a ‘catastrophe,’ after his newly unveiled cabinet held its first meeting. It is expected to tackle the twin challenges of a protest movement and a nose-diving economy, AFP said.

Diab, who replaced Saad Hariri as prime minister, vowed to meet the demands from the street but demonstrators were unconvinced and scuffled with police overnight.

The 61-year-old academic admitted that the situation he inherited was desperate. “Today we are in a financial, economic and social dead end,” Diab said in remarks read by a government official after the new cabinet’s inaugural meeting in Beirut.

French President Emmanuel Macron, one of the first leaders to react to the formation of the new government, said he would “do everything, during this deep crisis that they are going through, to help.”