Lebanon Daily News Brief 12/10/2021

Friday, December 10, 2021


Judge Bitar Demands Immediate Arrest of MP Ali Hassan Khalil
Judge Tarek Bitar demanded the arrest of MP Ali Hassan Khalil – considered the right-hand man to Speaker of Parliament Nabih Berri, leader of the Shiite Amal Movement – after he refused to appear before a court concerning the investigation of the August 4th Port of Beirut Explosion. “The refusal of a security apparatus to implement an arrest warrant constitutes a dangerous precedent that goes against the decisions of the judicial authority,” a judicial source said. [L’Orient Today]

Prime Minister Miqati Requests Energy Support from Egypt
PM Najib Miqati’s visit to Cairo involved the request of natural gas from Egypt to fill urgent needs in the Lebanese electricity sector. The request comes in the midst of Lebanon’s dire fuel and electricity crises. [Reuters]

FPM Head Gebran Bassil Denounces Labor Minister’s Decision to Expand Working Rights to Palestinians, Minister Defends Decision
“The decision of the Minister of Labor to allow Palestinians and stateless persons to exercise dozens of professions reserved for the Lebanese is a violation of the Labor Code and the constitution,” said Free Patriotic Movement Gebran Bassil on Twitter. [L’Orient Today] Labor Minister Mustafa Bayram, who is affiliated with FPM ally Hezbollah, defended the decision, saying “the Lebanese worker is protected.” [L’Orient Today]

Tripoli High School Teacher Accused of Harassment Arrested
After student actions involving sit-ins and protests demanded justice against a high school teacher at George Sarraf Public High School in Tripoli, Samer Mawlawi was arrested by order of the Lebanese Education Minister Abbas Halabi. Mawlawi confirmed that he is closely related to Interior Minister Bassam Mawlawi, who shares the family name. [The961]


Economic Bits of Interest
Jean AbiNader

AbiNader writes, “I am an avid reader of ‘Lebanon This Week,’ a weekly, English-language report published by the Byblos Bank Economic Research and Analysis Department headed by our colleague Nassib Ghobril…There are several items of interest from the November 27, 2021 edition that are worth sharing and analyzing, given what it tells us about the state of ‘resilience’ in the Lebanese economy and whether or not that descriptor is even appropriate. The first note comes from the Milken Institute’s Global Opportunities Index (GOI) which identified the investment climate in 143 countries to help foreign investors decide on where to place their money. In 2021, Lebanon has slid down 19 places, from 87th to 106th worldwide, as well as down two places among Arab countries, now in 10th place…”

Read More Here

The National Interest
Can Qatar End Lebanon’s Economic Crisis?
Adnan Nasser

Nasser writes, “This appears to be a moment for optimism. It could hardly come at a better time. Lebanon’s economy is in shambles, with some people digging through trash simply to find food to eat. This can be the start of Lebanon’s turnaround, but that can only happen when its leaders create permanent solutions through the practice of good governance and respect for the rule of law—not from robbing its people and then asking for a handout.”

Read More Here

Lebanese Opt for New Emigration Destinations Amid Crises
Rabih Damaj

Damaj writes, “Lebanon is witnessing one of the biggest waves of emigration in its history as the country faces its worst socio-economic conditions amid a worsening political crisis; Turkey, Armenia and Georgia have become new destinations.”

Read More Here

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.