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Berri and Mikati discuss elections, foreign relations and electricity

Berri and Mikati discuss elections, foreign relations and electricity

Premier Najib Mikati held his first meeting with Speaker Nabih Berri today since his cabinet received Parliament's vote of confidence. (Credit: NNA)

BEIRUT — The 2022 parliamentary elections, foreign relations and electricity were on the agenda for Tuesday’s meeting between Prime Minister Najib Mikati and Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri — the officials’ first meeting since the government received legislators’ vote of confidence.

Here’s what we know:

    • The premier said the final decision on whether to move the date on the parliamentary elections lies with Parliament. Political officials including Mikati have recently indicated the vote should be bumped up from May to March of next year to avoid campaigning during Ramadan.

    • Mikati denied any immediate plans for privatizing the electricity sector, noting that such a move would amount to a huge financial loss for the state unless the necessary reforms are undertaken at Electricité du Liban. The state electricity utility is floundering amid the country’s fuel shortages, barely able to provide up to a handful of hours of electricity a day, and has warned of a total public electricity blackout by the end of the month.

    • Commenting on relations with Syria, the premier expressed his willingness to visit the country as long as it would not put Lebanon at risk of US sanctions. He also said he plans to ramp up diplomacy with other Arab countries in the coming months.


BEIRUT — The 2022 parliamentary elections, foreign relations and electricity were on the agenda for Tuesday’s meeting between Prime Minister Najib Mikati and Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri — the officials’ first meeting since the government received legislators’ vote of confidence.Here’s what we know:    • The premier said the final decision on whether to move the date on...