Biden authorises $47mln in assistance to Lebanese Armed Forces: White House

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US President Joe Biden.
US President Joe Biden.

Washington [US], September 7 (ANI/Sputnik): US President Joe Biden authorised Secretary of State Antony Blinken to direct up to $47 million in assistance to the Lebanese Armed Forces, Biden said in a memorandum to Blinken published by the White House on Tuesday.

"I hereby delegate to the Secretary of State the authority... to direct the drawdown of up to $25 million in commodities and services from the inventory and resources of any agency of the United States Government to provide immediate assistance to the Lebanese Armed Forces," Biden said. "I also hereby delegate to the Secretary of State the authority... to direct the drawdown of up to $22 million in defense articles and services from the Department of Defense to provide immediate assistance to the Lebanese Armed Forces."

After years of economic hardship, Lebanon's economy further declined in 2019 as the population has faced shortages of fuel, medical supplies and other essential items while the value of the national currency has fallen by more than 90 per cent.

The Jordanian government has been supporting the Lebanese military for several months, with the most recent shipment of medical aid having arrived on Monday.

The situation has been exacerbated with the spread of the novel coronavirus Delta variant, prompting officials to consider implementing a new round of lockdowns. However, Mohammad Makkawi - governor of the central Mount Lebanon province - told Sputnik in August that such measures may prove difficult to enforce amid the current economic crisis. (ANI/Sputnik)

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