World Bank: $300 Million to Scale-Up Support to Poor Lebanese Households

A 10-year-old tourist guide walks inside Khan al-Franj in Sidon's old city, in southern Lebanon May 7, 2023. REUTERS/Aziz Taher
A 10-year-old tourist guide walks inside Khan al-Franj in Sidon's old city, in southern Lebanon May 7, 2023. REUTERS/Aziz Taher
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World Bank: $300 Million to Scale-Up Support to Poor Lebanese Households

A 10-year-old tourist guide walks inside Khan al-Franj in Sidon's old city, in southern Lebanon May 7, 2023. REUTERS/Aziz Taher
A 10-year-old tourist guide walks inside Khan al-Franj in Sidon's old city, in southern Lebanon May 7, 2023. REUTERS/Aziz Taher

The World Bank Group’s Board of Executive Directors has approved a $300 million additional financing to expand and extend the provision of cash transfers to poor and vulnerable Lebanese households.

A World Bank statement said Thursday that the approval will further support the development of a unified social safety net delivery system in Lebanon to allow a better response to ongoing and future shocks.

This new package represents the second additional financing to the Emergency Crisis and COVID-19 Response Social Safety Net Project (ESSN) project ($246 million) originally approved in January 2021 to help Lebanon address the impact of the economic crisis and the COVID-19 pandemic on the poor and vulnerable population.

The project already benefited from a first additional financing of $4 million in May last year.

“This second additional financing will continue to help Lebanon protect its population from the impact of various crises, as well as help the country develop a targeted and digital social safety net system,” said the statement.

“Going forward, Lebanon would need to secure the fiscal space needed to finance social protection needs, including social safety nets, over the long term,” it said.

The additional financing will enable the Lebanese government to continue to respond to the growing needs of poor and vulnerable households, said World Bank Middle East Country Director Jean-Christophe Carret.



Israeli Military Says it has Struck Houthi Targets in Yemen

A huge column of fire erupts following reported strikes in Hodeidah on July 20, 2024. (Photo by AFP)
A huge column of fire erupts following reported strikes in Hodeidah on July 20, 2024. (Photo by AFP)
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Israeli Military Says it has Struck Houthi Targets in Yemen

A huge column of fire erupts following reported strikes in Hodeidah on July 20, 2024. (Photo by AFP)
A huge column of fire erupts following reported strikes in Hodeidah on July 20, 2024. (Photo by AFP)

The Israeli army said Saturday it has struck several Houthi targets in western Yemen following a fatal drone attack by the militias in Tel Aviv the previous day.

A number of “military targets” were hit in the western port city of Hodeidah, the Israeli army said, adding that its attack was in response to “hundreds of attacks” against Israel in recent months.

“The Houthis attacked us over 200 times. The first time that they harmed an Israeli citizen, we struck them. And we will do this in any place where it may be required,” Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant said in a statement.
Israel’s military said it alone carried out the strikes and “our friends were updated.” An Israeli Defense Forces official didn't say how many sites were targeted, but told journalists that the port is the main entry point for Iranian weapons. The official didn't say whether it was Israel’s first attack on Yemen.

Houthi spokesman Mohammed Abdulsalam posted on X that the “blatant Israeli aggression” targeted fuel storage facilities and the province’s power station. He said the attacks aim “to increase the suffering of the people and to pressure Yemen to stop supporting Gaza.”

Abdulsalam said the attacks will only make Yemen's people and armed forces more determined to support Gaza. “There will be impactful strikes,” Mohamed Ali al-Houthi of the Supreme Political Council in Yemen wrote on X.

A media outlet controlled by the Houthis in Yemen, Al-Masirah TV, said the strikes on storage facilities for oil and diesel at the port and on the local electricity company caused deaths and injuries, and several people had severe burns. It said there was a large fire at the port and power cuts were widespread.

The drone attack by the Houthis killed one person in the center of Tel Aviv and wounded at least 10 others early Friday.