Lebanon Daily News Brief 10/31/2022

Tuesday, October 25, 2022



Lebanese Government Unable To Reimburse Every Depositor Who Lost Money During The Financial Crisis 

According to Reuters, “Lebanon’s deputy prime minister Saade Chami said Monday that the government’s plan to revive an economy crushed by a three-year financial crisis would not be able to pay back all depositors in full.” [Reuters]

World Bank Says It Is Ready To Award Lebanon $300-500 Million in Relief Funds

According to Arab Naharnet, “Prime Minister-designate Najib Mikati held talks Tuesday at the Grand Serail with a World Bank delegation comprising the bank’s Vice President for Middle East and North Africa Ferid Belhaj and Jean-Christophe Carret, the bank’s Country Director for the Middle East Department (Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon and Syria). Speaking after the meeting, Belhaj said the meeting was constructive and positive and that the World Bank is ready to offer Lebanon funding worth 300 to 500 million dollars for social aid and projects related to sustainable food and agriculture.” [Naharnet]

Investigations Into Beirut Port Explosion Are Halted By Political Quagmire 
According to the L’Orient Today, Any who hoped Judge Tarek Bitar would be able to resume his investigation of the Aug. 4, 2020, Beirut port blast were again disappointed.” Lawsuits against the government, along with several court seat vacancies have deter further actions from being taken. [L’Orient Today]

Delegation Meeting With Syria Over Maritime Demarcation Cancelled 
According to the National, talks with Damascus over the Lebanese-Syrian sea border have been canceled with the expectation that they will resume at a later date.  [The National]


Be Of Good Cheer From Lebanon
Jean AbiNader

AbiNader writes, “While there’s not much to be shouting for joy about, there are some small treasures worth exploring for the upcoming holidays that come straight from the heart. I’m talking about a book collection, cuisine elements, and a food emporium ready to serve you.”

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Malcolm H. Kerr Carnegie Middle East Center
Defeating The Deadlock?
Michael Young

Michael Young writes, “With Aoun scheduled to leave office at the end of October, a few days ago parliament entered the ten-day period prior to the president’s departure, during which it is constitutionally obligated to convene to elect a successor. Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri called for a session on October 24, but as in the preceding sessions parliamentarians failed to vote in a new president. Where are we today? The two major Christian blocs in parliament, the one headed by the Lebanese Forces and the other by the Free Patriotic Movement (FPM), have, predictably, neutralized each other. Both know that any new president will need the approval of at least one of the major Christian blocs to enjoy legitimacy, and are acting accordingly. Samir Geagea, the Lebanese Forces leader, and Gebran Bassil, the FPM leader, appear to have concluded that neither has a chance of being elected, so that both are moving on a backup plan. For Geagea, it is to work toward the election of what he calls a candidate of “confrontation” against Hezbollah; for Bassil, it is to ensure that any new president will accept Bassil’s onerous conditions if he wants to receive FPM backing. Neither scenario is easy to implement, or sustain, amid continued state disintegration and foreign pressures.”

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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.