Lebanon's Safadi withdraws candidacy to be next Prime Minister: reports

FILE PHOTO: Lebanon's then-Minister of Economy and Trade, Mohammad Safadi, speaks in 2010

BEIRUT (Reuters) - Former finance minister Mohammad Safadi withdrew his candidacy to be prime minister of the next Lebanese government, broadcasters LBCI and al-Jadeed reported on Saturday.

Safadi emerged as a candidate on Thursday when political sources and Lebanese media said three major parties had agreed to support him for the position.

Saad al-Hariri quit as prime minister on Oct. 29 in the face of unprecedented protests against a ruling elite that is widely accused of overseeing rampant state corruption and steering Lebanon into its worst economic crisis since the 1975-90 war.

(Writing by Tom Perry; editing by Grant McCool)