The United Nations Security Council has called for the creation of a new administration in Lebanon to be completed as soon as possible.
The United Nations Security Council applauded the fact that Lebanon’s parliamentary elections took place on May 15 as planned, despite “difficult conditions,” but called for the establishment of a new, inclusive government and the “immediate execution” of previously defined economic measures.
In a joint statement, council members noted that among the reforms should be the passage of a “suitable” national budget for 2022, which will allow for the swift implementation of a deal with the International Monetary Fund “to meet the needs of the Lebanese people.”
Since August 2019, the country’s economy has been in a debilitating crisis, with the Lebanese pound losing more than 90% of its value and more than three-quarters of the people living in poverty.
Lebanon and the International Monetary Fund (IMF) reached an agreement last month on a proposal that could unleash $3 billion in international finance over several years. The agreement must be approved by the IMF’s management and executive board, and it is contingent on Lebanese authorities carrying out a slew of economic reforms, including restructuring the country’s collapsed banking sector, improving transparency, and unifying the multiple exchange rates that apply to the country’s spiraling currency.
The Security Council emphasized the necessity of achieving these necessary reforms “to assure effective international support,” emphasizing the responsibility of Lebanese institutions, especially the newly elected parliament, in their implementation.
Members also demanded that “full, equal, and meaningful participation and representation” of women in Lebanese institutions, including the incoming administration, be improved.
The council members stated, “These elections were critical in enabling the Lebanese people to exercise their civic and political rights.”
They emphasized the importance of “a prompt conclusion of an independent, impartial, thorough, and transparent
investigation” into the devastating explosion at Beirut’s port on August 4, 2020, which killed over 200 people, injured thousands, and displaced tens of thousands more, as well as causing billions of dollars in property damage.
The probe is “necessary” to “address the legitimate aspirations of the Lebanese people for accountability and justice,” according to the council.
Members further asked all Lebanese parties to put in place a concrete policy of “disassociation from any external conflicts, as an important priority, as pointed out in earlier declarations, particularly the 2012 Baabda Declaration,” as outlined in past declarations.
Hezbollah, which is backed by Iran, has dispatched terrorists to Syria to fight alongside Assad’s army.