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Lebanon's president names former education head as PM

Lebanese President Michel Aoun on Dec. 19 named former education chief Hassan Diab as the country's new prime minister, Reuters reported.

Diab, reportedly backed by Hezbollah and its allies, secured enough votes from Lebanon's 128 deputies to overtake his nearest rival, diplomat Nawaf Salam, and emerge as the leading candidate for prime minister. Aoun is required to designate the deputies' favored candidate as prime minister.

"All our efforts must now focus on stopping the collapse and restoring confidence," Diab reportedly said after his appointment.

Former Prime Minister Saad al-Hariri resigned Oct. 29 following almost two weeks of protests against the government and amid the country's worst economic crisis since the 1975-1990 civil war.