POLICY Statement

October 28, 2019: ATFL Statement on the Continued Impasse in Lebanon

October 28, 2019

Washington, DC, October 28, 2019 (ATFL) – As demonstrations continue for the second week in Lebanon there appears to be no consensus in the government to address key economic, fiscal, and political issues. The American Task Force for Lebanon (AFTL) reiterates its call for the Lebanese government and its allies to respect the civil and human rights of the demonstrators, eschewing violent responses, begin a comprehensive and inclusive national dialogue, and take concrete, immediate steps to address its political crisis and the impeding financial emergency due to a lack of liquidity in the banking system.
The government’s inability to seriously address needed reforms, the need for transparency in its governance, and a lack of commitment to reforms at all levels has only increased instability and further weakened the country’s economic and political integrity.
As we have said before, we believe it is critical for the government of Lebanon to recognize the underlying conditions that have generated the demonstrations taking place and the need to immediately address those conditions and concerns in order to peacefully find resolution in concert with the needs of the Lebanese citizens.
Most immediately, the United States government and other friends of Lebanon should prioritize infusions of capital into the banking system, under international controls, to avoid its massive failure which would significantly harm the Lebanese people.
ATFL calls on Lebanon’s leaders to take immediate steps to implement in good faith a dialogue regarding all of the reforms being raised, in a serious and trustworthy fashion with the people. Lebanon’s future as an independent, multi-sectarian, democratic state is at stake. The time for action, dialogue, and collaboration on workable solutions in the immediate and long term is now.

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