BEIRUT - The formation of a fait accompli cabinet is likely to prompt a violent reaction from the Shiite group Hezbollah and its March 8 allies, Al-Akhbar newspaper reported.
“The plan of [Saudi Intelligence chief Prince] Bandar bin Sultan is to form a fait accompli cabinet to drag [Hezbollah] into a confrontation in the streets,” March 8 sources said in remarks published by the Beirut daily on Monday.
“[The plan is prompted by] the illusion that Hezbollah will be forced into withdrawing from Syria to gather its [forces] to respond to internal security pressure.”
“They do not know that the party is prepared to confront the security challenges if it is faced with such challenges on more than one front.”
The sources added that the decision to from a fait accompli government was part of “the war waged by Saudi Arabia” in the Middle East.
“Forming such a government will be another nail in the coffin of the Taif Accord.”
The Taif Accord brought a negotiated end to Lebanon’s civil war in 1989.
The sources also casted doubt over the possibility of success of a fait accompli government, which had been reportedly advocated by President Michel Suleiman and Prime Minister-designate Tammam Salam.
“How are Suleiman and Salam, as well as the March 14 group, expecting such a government, which is rejected by more than half of the Lebanese population, to rule?”
The sources also said that such a fait accompli government will be prevented from exercising power by any means “even if it meant storming the Grand Serail.”
The daily also quoted sources close to the Progressive Socialist Party as saying that the party leader MP Walid Jumblatt had informed Speaker Nabih Berri that he will not provide parliamentary confidence to any fait accompli government that is not backed by Berri and Hezbollah.
Reports have emerged that Lebanon’s president will green-light a neutral cabinet against March 8’s wishes.
Lebanon’s constitution stipulates that the president and premier-designate can sign decrees approving a government, but the parliament holds final sway on its activation with a vote of confidence.
Even if a new cabinet did not receive a vote of confidence, it would replace Najib Miqati’s current resigned government as the caretaker cabinet.
Last week, Suleiman voiced the urgency of forming a government ahead of the constitutionally-mandated start of the March 25 parliamentary preparations for the presidential elections.
He also hinted that he would support a neutral cabinet, which March 8 parties reject, asking, “why is it said that a political cabinet is an inclusive one?”