Q: Lebanon is experiencing a political crisis with very serious repercussions that threaten to bring down the banking system. Many French nationals and dual citizens (and French companies) are uncertain as to their deposits and/or investments. You are being asked to communicate information on this case and to say if an agreement exists between France and Lebanon that guarantees the investments and deposits of French nationals (and/or dual citizens)?
A: As we told you on December 19, the International Support Group for Lebanon, which met in Paris on December 11, underscored the need and the urgency for a new government to implement a credible reform package, especially in the economic arena. That is the way to meet the expectations expressed by the Lebanese since October 17.
Q: What is France’s view on the likelihood that the government in Lebanon may have a cabinet supported by Hezbollah and its allies? Would Western countries, including France, still be prepared to assist Lebanon – including financially – if it were led by a prime minister and a government supported by Hezbollah and its allies?
A: It is not up to us to comment on the future Lebanese government. That is up to the Lebanese. What we are calling for is an effective government that swiftly takes the necessary decisions to respond to the demands of the Lebanese people.
The International Support Group for Lebanon, which met in Paris on December 11, emphasized the need to swiftly form a new government in order to implement the necessary reforms, especially those of an economic nature, to confront the challenges facing the country. The International Support Group also reiterated the international community’s willingness to support Lebanon as it moves in this direction.