One yr after the port explosion, Macron is holding a brand new fundraising marketing campaign for Lebanon | World information
PARIS (Reuters) – French President Emmanuel Macron will attempt to raise more than $ 350 million in aid to Lebanon at a donor conference on Wednesday to mark the anniversary of the Beirut port explosion and another warning to his squabbling political class send.
A year since an explosion rocked the capital’s port and plunged Lebanon further into economic crisis, despite French and international pressure, its politicians have not yet formed a government that can rebuild the country.
“As the situation deteriorates, the need for government becomes more pressing,” an adviser Macron told reporters.
France has made international efforts to rescue its former colony from the crisis. Macron has made two visits to Beirut since the port explosion, imposing emergency relief measures and banning travel to some senior Lebanese officials in an effort to work out a package of reforms.
He has also convinced the European Union to agree on a sanctions framework that is ready for action.
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But his initiatives, including pledges from Lebanese politicians to agree on a non-sectarian government of technocrats, have so far been in vain.
US President Joe Biden will attend the conference, which is being co-hosted by the United Nations, Macron’s office said, along with about 40 other world leaders including Egypt, Jordan, Iraq and Canada. Great Britain is represented by its foreign minister.
Last year’s conference in the wake of the explosion raised around $ 280 million, with emergency aid being kept away from what Macron then called the “corrupt hands” of politicians and channeled through NGOs and aid organizations.
The new humanitarian aid will be unconditional, Macron’s office said, but about $ 11 billion in long-term funds raised in 2018 will remain under lock and key and depend on a number of reforms to be implemented by political authorities.
(Reporting by Michel Rose; Editing by Giles Elgood)
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