Hariri receives students from Rafik Hariri University after they won the students elections in Beirut, Tuesday, Oct. 16, 2018. (The Daily Star/Dalati Nohra, HO)
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Barring last-minute hitches, Lebanon might have a new government this week after a flurry of intensified political activity has apparently succeeded in surmounting the two major hurdles over the Druze representation and the Lebanese Forces' Cabinet share.Hariri met Monday separately with caretaker Information Minister Melhem Riachi and Arslan, discussing with them the problems of the LF's Cabinet share and the Druze representation respectively.Joumblatt has previously insisted on naming all three ministers reserved for the Druze sect in a 30-member Cabinet seemingly with the intent of excluding Arslan from it. Ahead of his meeting with Joumblatt, Aoun met with Arslan as part of a four-member parliamentary bloc in the Chouf mountains. The Future Movement's parliamentary bloc praised the new political climate and hoped it would lead to the formation of a national entente government.The bloc defended the 2016 political settlement reached between the Future Movement and the FPM that led to Aoun's election as president and brought Hariri back to the premiership.
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