Lebanon has named its envoy to Germany, Mustapha Adib, as the new premier on Monday, 31 August 2020, to steer the country through a deep crisis after the Beirut explosion compounded a sharp economic downturn.
The presidency made the announcement in a televised statement as Adib arrived at the palace in Baabda near Beirut to meet President Michel Aoun and parliament speaker Nabih Berri.
Adib has been Lebanon’s ambassador to Germany since 2013 and his name only emerged yesterday to replace Hassan Diab, whose government resigned in the aftermath of the deadly August 4 blast at Beirut port.
The 48-year-old was born in the northern city of Tripoli and is a Sunni Muslim, making him eligible to become prime minister under Lebanon’s sectarian-based power-sharing system.
From 2000 to 2004, he served as an advisor to Najib Mikati, a billionaire and former prime minister who backed his nomination.
In 2011, the then-prime minister Mikati appointed Adib as his chief of cabinet.
Former premiers Saad Hariri and Fouad Siniora also threw their weight behind Adib after two other candidates were reportedly rejected by the dominant Shiite Muslim group Hezbollah and its political allies.
His appointment came on the day French President Emmanuel Macron was due to arrive for another landmark visit.