BEIRUT: President Michel Sleiman requested Saturday Prime Minister Najib Mikati stay on as caretaker prime minister after accepting the government’s resignation, as the European Union voiced concern over the deteriorating situation in the country, particularly after Mikati stepped down. Meanwhile, sources close to Baabda Palace said Sleiman would set a date next week for launching parliamentary consultations over naming a prime minister-designate.

“Prime Minister Najib Mikati handed President Michel Sleiman [Saturday] at Baabda Palace the letter of resignation of his government and [Sleiman] asked him to continue as caretaker until the formation of a new government,” a statement from the president’s office said.