RAHI BROACHES SITUATION WITH UN’S WRONECKA


Maronite Patriarch, Cardinal Mar Bechara Boutros Al-Rahi, on Thursday welcomed in Bkerki, United Nations Special Coordinator for Lebanon, Joanna Wronecka.

Discussions reportedly touched on the current situation locally and regionally.

Patriarch Rahi also received, respectively, in Bkerki, the General President of the Lebanese Maronite Order, Abbot Hadi Mahfouz, then the new Argentine’s Ambassador to Lebanon, Maria Virginia Kattar.
Source: National News Agency – Lebanon

MIKATI BROACHES SITUATION WITH GERMAN AMBASSADOR, MEETS LAWMAKERS


Caretaker Prime Minister, Najib Mikati, on Thursday received at the Grand Serail, German Ambassador to Lebanon, Kurt Georg Stöckl-Stillfried, with whom he discussed the bilateral relations between the two countries and the situation in Lebanon and the region.

Premier Mikati also received a delegation of Akkar MPs, which included Walid Al-Baarini, Mohammed Suleiman, and Ahmed Al-Khair.

Among Premier Mikati’s itinerant visitors for today had been MPs Michel Al-Daher and Qasem Hashem.
Source: National News Agency – Lebanon

MINISTER OF PUBLIC WORKS, RUSSIAN AMBASSADOR DISCUSS PRESIDENTIAL DEADLOCK AND INFRASTRUCTURE DEVELOPMENT


Caretaker Minister of Public Works and Transportation, Dr. Ali Hamieh, on Wednesday welcomed Russian Ambassador to Lebanon, Alexander Rudakov.

The pair engaged in a comprehensive discussion regarding the latest developments on both local and regional fronts. The conversation also delved into the ongoing efforts towards achieving the presidential deadlines, in addition to addressing various other matters falling under the Ministry of Public Works and Transportation.

Hamieh emphasized that ‘dialogue among the Lebanese is the gateway to achieving the presidential deadlines, which we consider a fundamental factor in maintaining the country’s political stability.’

The Public Works Minister also highlighted that the current circumstances ‘cannot obstruct continuous work across all sectors, particularly those areas under the ministry’s purview.’

In this context, Hamieh stressed that enhancing the growth of his ministry’s affiliated facilities is among the facilitating factors to overcome these circumstances, es
pecially the economic ones.
Source: National News Agency – Lebanon

MIKATI PUSHES FOR GLOBAL ACTION ON REFUGEE CRISIS AT WORLD FORUM IN SWITZERLAND


Speaking at the World Forum for Refugees in Switzerland, Caretaker Prime Minister, Najib Mikati, on Wednesday issued a call to the world to address the Syrian displacement crisis in Lebanon, emphasizing its importance as a top priority. He highlighted Lebanon’s precarious position, stating, “We are on the brink of total collapse.”

Mikati addressed the attendees, stating, “Our meeting today takes place amidst profound sorrow and distress, witnessing the ongoing humanitarian crisis faced by the Palestinian people in Gaza, threatened with displacement. This places us in a dual challenge: practically addressing the Syrian displacement issue ongoing since 2011 and dealing with the unfolding situation in Gaza.”

He continued by stressing the necessity of action to halt the deliberate killing and destruction in Gaza, acknowledging the support of 153 countries in yesterday’s United Nations General Assembly resolution to protect civilians and cease hostilities in Gaza.

Mikati reaffirmed Lebanon’s steadfast support
for the Palestinian people’s right to self-determination. He urged immediate measures from the international community to stop violence, protect civilians, ensure a fair and lasting solution respecting Palestinian rights, aspirations, and guaranteeing the right of return for Palestinian refugees under international law.

Addressing Lebanon’s history of hosting Palestinian refugees and the immense sacrifices made to defend the Palestinian cause, Mikati highlighted the country’s limited resources and called for prioritizing the resolution of the conflict as the key to addressing the region’s crises.

In light of the prolonged Syrian crisis and its direct impact on Lebanon, including hosting over 1.5 million Syrian refugees, Mikati emphasized the multifaceted challenges beyond economic and social aspects, affecting communal security, demographic balance, increased crime rates, and prison overcrowding, surpassing Lebanon’s capacity to endure.

Expressing concern over new waves of Syrian displacement through illeg
al channels for primarily economic reasons, Mikati stressed the need to prevent unjustified mass migration threatening Lebanon’s sovereignty and Lebanese society’s fabric.

He called upon the international community to focus on facilitating the return of refugees to stable areas in Syria, providing aid within their homeland. Moreover, Mikati proposed a comprehensive plan to tackle the root causes of the Syrian crisis, ensure safe and voluntary refugee returns, and prioritize support and reintegration of Syrian refugees within Syria.

Regarding Lebanon’s economic burdens due to the recent influx of Syrian migrants, Mikati suggested a scientific classification distinguishing between Syrian workers and displaced persons, creating a national mechanism to determine the legal status of each Syrian displaced person in Lebanon, ensuring private sector employment conditions that reduce competition with Lebanese professionals.

Mikati concluded by urging global cooperation to resolve the refugee crisis, asserting Leban
on’s right to seek assistance in addressing this imminent collapse. He emphasized Lebanon’s determination to protect its homeland and its people’s right to live with dignity and pride.
Source: National News Agency – Lebanon

AUDI DISCUSSES ARRAY OF LOCAL CHALLENGES WITH EU AMBASSADOR


Beirut Metropolitan Bishop Elias Audi on Wednesday met with European Union Ambassador to Lebanon, Sandra De Waele, with whom he discussed the ongoing situation in Lebanon and the hardships faced by its people.

The conversation between the pair centered on addressing the current challenges prevalent in the country.
Source: National News Agency – Lebanon

UNDP’S HAUENSTEIN PAYS JUSTICE MINISTER FAREWELL VISIT


Caretaker Minister of Justice, Judge Henry Khoury, on Wednesday welcomed United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) Resident Representative in Lebanon, Melanie Hauenstein, who paid him a farewell visit marking the end of her mission in Lebanon.

Discussions during the meeting focused on the sustainability of joint projects between Lebanon and the organization, as well as the ongoing support provided by the UNDP to Lebanon.
Source: National News Agency – Lebanon

LEBANON’S PRIME MINISTER ARRIVES AT WORLD REFUGEE FORUM HEADQUARTERS IN GENEVA


Caretaker Prime Minister, Najib Mikati, on Wednesday has arrived at the headquarters of the “World Forum for Refugees” at “Palexpo” in Geneva, where he will represent Lebanon at the forum that commenced its proceedings this morning.

Mikati is scheduled to deliver a speech at the forum later today.

The Lebanese delegation to the forum includes Caretaker Minister of Foreign Affairs and Emigrants, Abdallah Bou Habib.
Source: National News Agency – Lebanon

LEBANESE NEWSPAPERS’ HEADLINES FOR DECEMBER 13, 2023


Lebanese Forces prepare to escalate against ‘coup’

Jumblatt to An-Nahar: Chief of staff if extension is not possible

Nidaa Al-Watan:

Hezbollah seeks to subdue final bastions of sovereignty, obstruct implementation of resolution 1701″

Al-Joumhouria:

Al-Murr: Amending 1701 means demolishing it, which is extremely dangerous… ambiguity shrouds extension

Al-Akhbar:

Maneuvers jeopardize Army Chief’s extension
Source: National News Agency – Lebanon