Suleiman consults with International Support Group
Follow-up on financial support channeling
President Michel Suleiman met on Friday October 18 with ambassadors of the UN Security Council’s permanent members and European Union to discuss following up on the recommendations of the International Support Group for Lebanon decided in New York last September.
Participants in the meeting agreed that financial aid alone is not enough to solve the crisis that Lebanon faces. The participation of all local political figures is required, along with the support of regional and international powers.
Suleiman said the first item on the agenda concerned following up on promised international aid with the International Monetary Fund and the World Bank. “The second step involves holding a series of conferences for donor countries to channel their promised aid.”
He said the support group should hold different meetings at a later stage to discuss specific sectors and the means to support them.
“The Lebanese government presented a roadmap of priority programs needed to consolidate stability on the economic and social levels in the face of the Syrian crisis,” said UN Special Coordinator Derek Plumbly. The UNHCR has already sent $530 million in aid to refugees this year.
Angelina Eichhorst, Head of the European Union (EU) delegation to Lebanon, said: “It is necessary to form a government that can fully exercise power to manage the refugee situation, take national decisions, and assume obligations towards the international community.”
The EU recently assigned an additional €70 million (around $95 million) to address the urgent needs of the most deprived refugees as winter approaches.
EU institutions and member states have allocated over €500 million (around $680 million) to Lebanon to deal with the repercussions of the Syrian crisis through UN institutions like the UNHCR, UNICEF and the World Food Programme. A large portion of this aid was also handed to the Lebanese government to address the needs of Lebanese host families in the most deprived municipalities."
Reported by Alexis Baghdadi
Date Posted: Oct 18, 2013