| 28 October 2021, Thursday |

President Aoun meets German Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, says port investigations will continue

President of the Republic, General Michel Aoun, met German Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, Mr. Niels Annen, today at Baabda Palace.

The President told Minister Annen that the new government will work quickly to achieve the reform program  for economic revival, and that contacts were made with the International Monetary Fund for this purpose, in conjunction with the continuation of forensic audit which started from the financial accounts of the Central Bank, “Which will later include ministries, departments, public institutions, councils and funds”.

Moreover, the President stressed the will to overcome internal and external difficulties facing Lebanon, emphasizing that overcoming these difficulties will be achieved gradually to restore confidence and support of the international community, and that work will be done in this field in order to achieve the desired goal.

President Aoun also assured the German Minister that investigation of the Beirut Port explosion will continue to reveal all circumstances accompanying the explosion, especially how the ammonium nitrate reached Beirut and were emptied at the Port, knowing that it was sent to another country. The President welcomed any technical assistance which Germany could provide in this context.

In addition, the President stated that the reconstruction plan prepared by Lebanon, also includes addressing poverty, rebuilding the Port, and other developmental projects in addition to creating an electronic government. President Aoun pointed out that any party which can help Lebanon in implementing these projects is welcome.

Then, President Aoun addressed the issue of displaced Syrians and its repercussions on the Lebanese situation, where he reiterated the request to the international community to help return these displaced people to Syria after the security situation is now stable in most Syrian territories.

Afterwards, the President congratulated Minister Annen on the German Unity Day, which was two days ago, and conveyed his greetings to Mrs. Angela Merkel, thanking Germany for all the support provided to Lebanon in year 2020, especially during the 3rd Conference to support Lebanon, in addition to German participation in the naval UNIFIL forces. The President also thanked Germany for the interest of German companies in rebuilding the Beirut Port, indicating that the study prepared by German companies is being studied by competent references.

For his part, Minister Annen conveyed German Support for the Lebanese people, and stressed the need to strengthen bilateral relation between both countries in different fields, especially since Germany has become the second largest donor country to Lebanon, and “Germany is determined to continue cooperation for the benefit of the two friendly countries and peoples”.

Minister Annen also indicated that Germany has provided direct support to Lebanon, and will continue to provide this support, especially after the formation of a new government, and the steps which this government is expected to take in addressing the difficult Lebanese situation.

In conclusion, the German Minister pointed out that elections which took place in Germany will result in a new government which will continue to provide the necessary support to Lebanon and will cooperate with the Lebanese government to achieve all than helps Lebanon’s advancement and stability.

The meeting was also attended by German Ambassador to Lebanon, Andreas Kindle, and an accompanying delegation.