Army Commander Joseph Aoun, said that “Lebanon is facing an unprecedented economic crisis, and it seems clear that there are no opportunities for solutions in the near future; the army has received local and international support and confidence, and the need for support has become greater today, in order to remain cohesive and able to carry out its tasks”.
“I commend the performance of the soldiers who are facing these difficult conditions with determination, discipline and belief in the sanctity of the mission despite the deterioration of the value of the Lebanese pound, which led to a decrease in the value of their salaries by nearly 90 percent, and the same percentage applies to nutrition, medical care, operational tasks and spare parts for vehicles”, he added during the virtual international conference to support the Lebanese army.
“I warn against the continued deterioration of the economic and financial situation in Lebanon, which will inevitably lead to the collapse of institutions, including the military, which will threaten the security of the country; I stress the need to support the military as individuals in order to overcome this delicate stage, in addition to supporting the institution as a whole”.
“The army is the only and last institution that is still cohesive and is the guarantee for security and stability in Lebanon and the region; any harm to it will lead to the collapse of the Lebanese entity and the spread of chaos; we believe that we will pass this difficult and delicate stage thanks to the determination and will of our soldiers and with the support of the Lebanese and friendly countries”, he followed.
An international virtual conference hosted by France to drum up support for the Lebanese army has kicked off, with the participation of 20 states and the support of the United Nations and Italy, the Lebanese military indicated in a tweet on Thursday.
In his intervention, Italian Defense Minister Lorenzo Guerini highlighted the necessity to fulfill the needs of the Lebanese army and to provide key support for the military institution.
For her part, French Defense Minister Florence Parly said: “We are all concerned with the [necessity] that the Lebanese army remains capable of assuming its mission in preserving security and stability.”
In turn, UN Special Coordinator for Lebanon Joanna Wrontecka indicated that the purpose of today’s conference was to support the Lebanese army so that it should remain effective and coherent.
For her part, Caretaker Defense Minister Zeina Akar said: “We should not abandon the army, which is the guarantor of Lebanon’s stability and the security of the Lebanese.”
“Today’s conference is an additional act of solidarity undertaken by the international community in support for the institution that constitutes the pillar of stability in the country,” said Akar.
“I would like to thank, in particular, French Minister Florence Parly, for organizing this meeting in collaboration with the Italian state,” she added. “I would also like to thank the United Nations represented by the UN Special Coordinator for Lebanon,” she continued.
Moreover, Akar highlighted the endeavors of the Lebanese army in uncovering terrorist plots and terror rings, controlling the borders and fighting smuggling, securing the implementation of UN Resolution 1701, and coordinating the distribution of humanitarian aids dispatched to Lebanon following Beirut port blast.