BEIRUT — Lebanon’s prime minister resigned Friday due to government infighting that threatens to leave a void in the state’s highest ranks at a time of rising tensions and sporadic violence inflamed by the civil war in neighboring Syria.
Najib Mikati stepped down to protest the Parliament’s inability to agree on a law to govern elections set for later this year, as well as for the Cabinet’s refusal to extend the tenure of the country’s police chief, who is about to retire.
Underpinning the political crisis are Lebanon’s hugely sectarian politics and the fact that the country’s two largest political blocs support opposite sides in Syria’s civil war.
Lebanon and Syria share a complex network of political and sectarian ties, and many fear that violence in Syria will spread to Lebanon.
In a speech aired live Friday on Lebanese TV, Mikati said he hoped his departure would force other politicians to find solutions.
‘‘Today I announce the government’s resignation, hoping that God willing it will provide an impetus for the primary political blocs in Lebanon to assume their responsibilities,’’ he said.