Lebanese PM calls on Arab League for help to get out of crisis
Lebanon has been going through a severe economic crisis that has worsened amid a fuel shortage
By News Desk - November 02 2022

(Photo Credit: EFE/WAEL HAMZEH)

Lebanese Prime Minister Najib Mikati confirmed during his speech at the Arab League summit on 2 November, that the situation in Lebanon has changed, as the lights have gone out and it has become unable to host an Arab demographic equivalent to half of its own population, according to RT.

Mikati added that “Lebanon has turned into a weak body that needs strengthening, and we are facing the worst economic crisis that has put more than half of the Lebanese people below the poverty line.”

The Lebanese Prime Minister also emphasized that despite the harsh conditions, they succeeded in achieving many goals, including “holding elections and signing the maritime border demarcation agreement.”

“We count on the help of Arab countries for Lebanon to get out of its crises, and we call for activating the work of the League of Arab States,” he added.

Over the past couple of years, Lebanon has experienced the complete disintegration of its energy sector as a result of decades of corruption and mismanagement. This has forced most of the population to rely on private energy generators in order to fulfill their needs, people were generally receiving only two hours of electricity a day.

Almost a year after the US promised Lebanon it would waive sanctions and allow Lebanon to import electricity from Jordan, the US continues to suffocate Lebanon with the indirect results of the Caesar Act.

Additionally, according to Arabic media reports in November 2021, the US government refused to provide Egypt with the required exemption from the Caesar Act in order to sell gas to Lebanon via Syria.

As a result of this situation, Hezbollah and the Amal Movement issued a joint statement on 3 April calling on the Lebanese government to accept an offer by Iran to build two modern power plants in the country.

Media reported on 6 October that US Senator Ted Cruz introduced an amendment last month that would make the US-sponsored deal to import gas into Lebanon through Syria eligible for sanctions under the Caesar Act.

Cruz proposed the amendment on 29 September to the 2023 National Defense Appropriations Act (NDAA), which would render any “energy-related transaction” with Damascus subject to US sanctions.

If this amendment passes, the White House would be forced to provide Lebanon with a written exemption from Caesar Act sanctions in order for the deal to go through, something it has not been willing to do since the agreement was first proposed.

The Caesar Act, passed in 2019 by the US Congress, imposed harsh sanctions on Syria and currently prohibits countries or businesses from cooperation or trading with the Syrian government.

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