Lebanon Daily News Brief 11/15/2022

Tuesday, November 15, 2022


November 15th, 2022

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The American Task Force on Lebanon invites you to a special debrief and moderated discussion with USAID Administrator Samantha Power tomorrow at 11 AM ET via Zoom

Administrator Power is currently on official travel to Lebanon, where she will focus on food security and higher education, among other priorities, and is looking forward to engaging with the Lebanese American community and friends of Lebanon in the US to share key findings from her visit.

Register Here

USAID Administrator Power in a LBCI Interview at the Port of Beirut. 

USAID Administrator Samantha Power Announces More Than $72 Million in Additional Humanitarian Assistance for Lebanon
The United States, through the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), is providing more than $72 million in emergency food assistance to more than 650,000 vulnerable people in Lebanon, including refugees from Syria and other countries. This funding, through the United Nations World Food Program, will provide household food parcels – including rice, lentils, and chickpeas – for Lebanese families, and electronic food vouchers for Syrian refugees to use in local shops, which supports the Lebanese economy.”

Read Full Statement Here

Register Here


Prime Minister Mikati Endorses Sleiman Frangieh for Presidency
“Lebanon’s caretaker prime minister — and de facto leader, in the absence of an official head of state — endorsed Sleiman Frangieh’s candidacy for president on Monday. The endorsement comes amid widespread worries over Lebanon’s leadership vacuum as the struggling nation hurtles through its third week without a president.” [
The National]

Total Set to Launch Exploration Off Coast of Lebanon Soon
According to AP News, “French oil giant Total said Tuesday it would soon launch exploration activities in search for gas in the Mediterranean Sea off Lebanon’s coast, following last month’s Lebanon-Israel deal on their maritime border.” [AP News]

UNRWA Makes Urgent Appeal for Funding
According to Arab News, “The UN relief agency has warned of a major disruption to services for Palestinian refugees unless it receives an immediate cash injection. Philippe Lazzarini, commissioner general of the financially troubled UN Relief and Works Agency, said that in the coming weeks, UNRWA urgently needed between $50 million and $80 million “to be able to end the year and keep schools, health centers, and other basic services running.” [
Arab News]

Government of Lebanon to Abandon Official Exchange Rate of 1,507 LL to the Dollar Soon
According to the National, “Cash-strapped Lebanon is hoping to fill state coffers by raising the exchange rate for taxes, fees and customs duties, Caretaker Finance Minister Youssef Khalil told The National, as the country reels from three years of economic collapse. Lebanon will abandon the official rate of 1,507 pounds to the US dollar and introduce a combination of higher exchange mechanisms in accordance with the currency’s market value.” [
The National]


Innocent Victims Of Beirut’s Politics
Jean AbiNader

AbiNader writes, “Lebanon’s fragility is underscored by its gravely weakened education and health sectors; the miserable condition and cost of public transportation; its devalued economy; and the ongoing threats to its security and stability. Anyone who says that these are temporary conditions has not been in the streets of Lebanon lately. Consider the cholera-infested areas of the north, Lebanese dumpster diving in Beirut, or the littered streets and beaches. While there is some agreement that a consensus president is needed, the lack of agreement on implementing the IMF reform package is less reassuring . . . The hollowing out of state institutions and protections of civil and human rights will delay the reconstructing of a credible, professional public sector. The first needed remediation is a package of social support services that are inclusive, equitable, and transparent. As of now, the social contract between the state and its employees is frazzled, fraught with omissions, exclusions, and nepotism, and subject to the whims of political leaders ensuring their survival by pandering to their constituents.”

Read More Here

L’Orient Today
Yeghia Tashjian: Russian Influence ‘Evident’ in Northern Lebanon
Julien Ricour-Brasseur

Ricour-Brasseur writes, “The associate fellow at AUB’s Issam Fares Institute for Public Policy and International Affairs spoke with L’Orient-Le Jour about Moscow’s desire to strengthen and expand its soft power in Lebanon.”

Read More Here


ATFL Internship – Winter 2023

ATFL’s internship program will seek to provide young adults passionate about US-Lebanon relations with the opportunity to serve with the leading US organization promoting closer US-Lebanon relations. The internship will provide adults the opportunity to learn about the US government policy making as it relates to foreign policy. Interns will also be able to gain valuable professional experience working directly with an ATFL staff member.

Interns are expected to work at least 15 hours per week for a minimum of a three-month period. Interns should be based in the Washington, DC metropolitan area so that they can participate in ATFL’s hybrid, remote and in-person, schedule and take advantage of all of the opportunities that this region offers.

This internship is not paid; however, ATFL is prepared to confer academic credit to those who complete the program.

Interested candidates should send their resume and cover letter to steven.howard@atfl.org by December 2nd, 2022. 

Learn More on ATFL's LinkedIn Page
Learn More on ATFL’s LinkedIn Page

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.




American Task Force On Lebanon
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