Lebanon’s government stepped down, less than a week after a massive explosion in Beirut killed more than 160 people. Public anger mounted after the blast. Lebanese Prime Minister Hassan Diab announced his cabinet’s resignation Monday. “Today I announce the resignation of this government,” Diab said. “We are facing an earthquake that struck the country, with all its humanitarian, social, economic and national repercussions.” President Aoun asked Diab and his ministers to continue performing their duties until a new government is installed. Lebanon has a power-sharing government structure, where different groups are each represented by an arm of the government.
In fact the presidency must go to a Christian, the prime minister must be a Sunni Muslim and the speaker of parliament must be a Shiite Muslim. An independent prime minister is expected to be named, who will put together an economic and financial rescue plan. Many people have accused the country’s leaders of culpability through their alleged negligence and corruption. Protesters have taken to the streets and clashed with police. The prime minister presented himself in the speech as a reforming leader blocked by endemic corruption dating back years.