Lebanon - Q&A from the press briefing (30 July 2021)


Q : The Lebanese national dialogue has been stalled, and for nine months now the Lebanese leaders have been unable to form a government. The country is experiencing an unprecedented catastrophic economic crisis, as well an extremely critical health situation.
1)Under these circumstances, is France considering proposing the idea of an informal meeting (based on the Celle-Saint-Cloud format) in order to accelerate efforts to resolve the crisis and help form a government, which should precede any conference on financial aid?
2) On August 16, a private French health operator (ELSAN) is launching an operation to hire 600 nurses in Lebanon, which would drain the already struggling healthcare services in that country. Do you have any comment?

A : The urgent formation of a fully operational government capable of launching the reforms that the situation demands and which are the prerequisite of any structural assistance remains the priority. France calls on Lebanese leaders to act accordingly, and in support of the general interest, as swiftly as possible. It is prepared to join with its European and international partners to increase pressure on Lebanese political leaders to achieve this.

Meanwhile, to meet the needs of the Lebanese people, whose situation is worsening day by day, a new international conference to support the Lebanese population will be held on August 4 at the behest of President Macron, with the support of the UN.

France stands with the Lebanese people, who have been hit hard by the crisis and by the Covid-19 epidemic. In 2020, more than €22 million in French aid were allocated to the Lebanese healthcare sector.

It does not encourage or endorse any action that would weaken the Lebanese healthcare system.