Lebanon Daily News Brief 9/21/2021

Tuesday, September 21, 2021


Miqati’s Government Wins Vote of Confidence
After Lebanese lawmakers gathered at UNESCO Palace today to review Prime Minister Najib Miqait’s policy statement, Miqati’s government won a vote of confidence from parliament. The policy statement vows to quickly resume IMF talks and to begin reforms. About 85 MPs gave their vote of confidence and 15 voted against it. The session lasted over eight hours, including a temporary delay from a power outage. [Al Jazeera]

Lebanon’s Creditors Urge IMF Talks
A group of Lebanon’s bondholders, including Amundi, Ashmore, BlackRock, BlueBay, Fidelity and T-Rowe Price, said in a statement that it urges the Lebanese government to engage in IMF talks as soon as possible. The group said they hope for a rapid debt restructuring process. [Reuters]

100 Million Liters of Fuel Offloaded by Tomorrow
A representative of the Syndicate of Gas Station Owners in Lebanon said that the gas crisis in Lebanon will be delayed for at least the next two weeks as 100 million liters of fuel are offloaded into gas stations by tomorrow. He further urged officials to announce the mechanisms that will be adopted to completely remove fuel subsidies. [The 961]


How Biden Can Help Lebanon Break Its Vicious Political Cycle
Hanin Ghaddar

Ghaddar writes, “Lebanese politics sadly haven’t changed much over the last decade or two — and neither has the U.S. playbook for addressing the country’s intermittent crises. Now, however, the Biden administration has an opportunity to take advantage of Hezbollah’s weakness and bolster the viable political alternative to the group’s rule that Washington has long hoped for. By jettisoning its traditional focus on Lebanon’s failed institutions and instead investing in the business leaders, activists and youth who are increasingly frustrated with Hezbollah, the U.S. can empower a new generation of Lebanese Shias who actually do want change — and may finally have the power to make it.”

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Middle East Institute
The Consequences of Lebanon’s Constitutional Crisis
Antoine Z. Sfeir

Sfeir writes, “While Lebanon’s unending tensions are mostly political and socio-economic in nature, substantially more attention must be devoted to the Constitution. In fact, at the heart of every imaginable misfortune, the country’s 1926 Constitution, amended in 1989 with the Ta’if Agreement, is in need of “technical” review and updates. This is, of course, easier said than done, but more attention must be paid to the texts that “govern” the land and its socio-political constructs. To that end, adjustments to the current and somewhat inconvenient procedures and conditions are inevitable.”

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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.