President Emile Lahoud, who is pro-Syrian, said in a statement the danger exists for a state of emergency, Voice of America reported from Beirut.
But a spokesman for Prime Minister Foud Siniora said the government rejects Lahoud's order to the army to take security powers. A spokesman for Lahoud countered the president was not declaring a state of emergency but calling on the army to maintain order, CNN reported.
Lahoud also announced he did not plan to name a new government before he leaves office, leaving Siniora's government in place for the moment.
Parliament must name a successor to Lahoud, but the political opposition is boycotting the process. Lahoud's term of office was set to end at midnight Friday.