Lebanon Daily News Brief 08/22/2022

Monday, August 22, 2022



Canadian Minister Visits Lebanon, Comments on Repatriation of Syrians
The Canadian Minister for International Development, Harjit Sajjan, visited Lebanon as part of a tour of the region. Addressing recent remarks and proposals from the Lebanese government concerning the issue of Syrian repatriation, 
Minister Sajjan said yesterday, “It is very, very important to make sure that there is an absolute safe environment where they can return to . . . Clearly, right now, based on our assessments Syria is not a safe place for people to return.” [AP News]

Lebanon Expected to Reach Second Highest Inflation Rate in FY 2022 
Based on data provided by Fitch Solutions, Lebanon’s inflation is expected to average around 178% for FY 2022, which would be an increase from last year’s average of 155%. This would position Lebanon as the country with the second highest inflation rate in the world, just behind Sudan. [The National]

Parliamentary Finance and Budget Committee Gives Government One Week to Provide Budget Information
According to L’Orient Today, “Parliament’s Finance and Budget Committee MP Ibrahim Kanaan (FPM/Metn) on Thursday said regarding the 2022 budget that his committee gave ‘the government and the finance minister [Yousef Khalil] a week deadline to give us the numbers of [fiscal] incomes and expenses’ to decide what to do accordingly.” [L’Orient Today]

Minister of Public Health Comments on Cancer Medications Delivered to AUBMC
In a radio interview, caretaker Minister of Public Health, Dr. Firas Abiad, said that,the main problem when it comes to financing cancer drugs and kidney dialysis procedures lies in funding [and that] work is underway to boost funding and to ensure that there is no [drug] misuse, waste or corruption.” He made note of the role that US NGO’s in particular played in the recent $1.4 million donation of cancer medications to AUBMC. [L’Orient Today]


Taking On The Beast – Combatting Corruption In Lebanon
Jean AbiNader

AbiNader writes, “Without an accountable and transparent judiciary, free from political pressures, and under the jurisdiction of a single, civil authority, citizens have no recourse to ensure protection for their civil and human rights. In tandem with this are police and magistrates who protect these rights as a core duty. Just as important are prison systems and public defenders who have clearly defined roles and guidelines that enhance, not undermine, justice.”

Read More Here

Public Sector Paralysed As Lebanon Lurches Towards ‘Failed State’

Timour Azhari and Maya Gebeily

Azhari and Gebeily write, “The public sector paralysis is spreading further – this week judges launched their own protest, while soldiers moonlight to feed themselves and government offices run out of power and basic office supplies. State infrastructure, already strained by years of unchecked spending, corruption and a preference for quick fixes over sustainable solutions, has reached breaking point. ‘We are in a state of collapse,’ said Lamia Moubayed of the Lebanese Institute of Finance Basil Fuleihan, a research center at the Ministry of Finance. In parliament, there is no fuel to run a generator for the elevator – so security guards run messages up and down the stairs between workers.”

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Disclaimer: The views and opinions expressed in these articles are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the position of the American Task Force on Lebanon, a non-profit, nonpartisan leadership organization of Lebanese-Americans.