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France, Saudi Arabia Urge Lebanon to Find Way Forward

France, Saudi Arabia Urge Lebanon to Find Way Forward

Tuesday, 10 December, 2019 - 16:45
Photo: Reuters

French Foreign Minister Jean-Yves Le Drian on Tuesday urged the Lebanese to form a new government swiftly or risk a financial crisis worsening and threatening the country’s stability.


“(They should) form a government quickly because any delay will continue to worsen the situation,” Le Drian told a news conference.


Furthermore, Saudi Arabia's foreign minister said stability in Lebanon was "very, very important" to the kingdom.


Faisal bin Farhan Al Saud said he would not "pre-judge" a conference planned this week in Paris to support Lebanon, which is facing its worst economic crisis since the 1975-90 civil war. "I'll wait for the results of the conference."


The Lebanese people and the political system need to find a way forward that guarantees its stability and sovereignty, he told a news conference following a Gulf Arab summit in Riyadh in response to a question regarding aid to Lebanon.


Six weeks since Saad al-Hariri resigned as prime minister, prompted by protests against the ruling elite, the financial crisis is generating concerns for Lebanon’s stability: banks are enforcing capital controls, dollars are scarce, and the Lebanese pound has lost a third of its value on a black market.


France hosts on Wednesday a meeting of the International Lebanon Support Group, which includes Gulf Arab donors such as Saudi Arabia, major European powers, and the United States.


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