|Date: Oct 10, 2019|
|Source: The Daily Star|
|Hariri reaffirms Lebanon's commitment to U.N. Resolution 1701|
|BEIRUT: Prime Minister Saad Hariri reaffirmed Lebanon's commitment to United Nations Security Council Resolution 1701 at a meeting with top U.N. officials Wednesday afternoon.|
Speaking to the U.N.’s Under-Secretary-General for Political and Peacebuilding Affairs Rosemary DiCarlo, Hariri underlined “Lebanon's adherence to Resolution 1701” and called upon the U.N. to “help Lebanon ... put an end to Israeli violations” of the decree.
According to statement released by Hariri's office, the prime minster and DiCarlo held the meeting to discuss “the situation in the region and the challenges that Lebanon is facing to preserve its security, economic and social stability.” U.N Special Coordinator for Lebanon Jan Kubis was also present at the meeting.
In an thinly veiled reproach of Hezbollah, Hariri highlighted the government’s “rejection of anything that would drag Lebanon into conflicts or interference in the internal affairs of Arab countries.”
Hezbollah has been an active military player in the conflict in neighboring Syria since 2012.
Turning to Lebanon's economic and financial situation, Hariri referenced the wide-ranging cooperation between his office and the offices of President Michel Aoun and Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri, noting all are working to “fortify Lebanon in the face of regional and economic risks and to carry out administrative, sectoral and monetary reforms.”
The government has committed to implementing a range of reforms, in order to unlock more than $11 billion in grants and soft loans pledged to Lebanon by international donors at the CEDRE conference in 2018. These loans and grants are intended to help stimulate the economy and finance infrastructure projects set out in the government’s Capital Investment Program.
Hariri and DiCarlo also discussed the Syria conflict, with Hariri highlighting the “responsibility of the United Nations in mobilizing the international community” to help Lebanon in its hosting of more than 1 million Syrian refugees. To this end, Hariri welcomed the formation of the Syrian Constitutional Committee, which he hailed as “a step towards reaching a political solution” to the conflict.
DiCarlo said that she had “an excellent discussion” with the prime minister. She assured Hariri of the U.N.’s “continued support” for Lebanon and expressed her gratitude for “the generosity of the Lebanese people” in hosting large numbers of Syrian refugees.