| 23 May 2024, Thursday |

Diab complains like any citizen! Where are the 97% of reforms his government achieved?

Two days after Hassan Nasrallah’s confirmation that Lebanon is heading towards demise, the Caretaker Prime Minister, Hassan Diab, appeared saying that Lebanon is on the verge of a catastrophe. But what is noteworthy is that Diab complained, like any other citizen, about the outages of medicine, gasoline, and electricity, so if the official is complaining the situation, who then will address this crisis?

However, Diab didn’t tell us what happened with the 97 percent achievements accomplished by his government. Diab used the paper of the displaced Syrians and refugees, warning of the danger of a big crash, which its repercussions will resonate beyond Lebanon territory in the short and long term, both on land and at sea, to push the international community that addressed him through diplomatic missions and international organizations in Lebanon. Diab met them in the Grand Serail, and called them to aid Lebanon and not punish the Lebanese for the corrupt.

The question that arises in this context, did the Serail meeting that excluded representatives from Saudi Arabia and UAE, convinced the representatives of Western and Arab countries? Did Diab persuade them to help Lebanon despite their continuous demand to adopt reforms and curb corruption?

While waiting for an answer to this question, Qatar’s foreign minister arrived in Beirut, carrying an initiative to resolve the crisis, but to what extent can Qatar work on the Lebanese file in isolation from the Saudi decision? The matter is doubtful.

But what is noteworthy, is that the Qatari minister’s agenda has excluded any meeting with the present government and the caretaker prime minister. His meeting also with his counterpart, Minister Zeina Akar, was limited to a quick handshake while receiving him at the airport. However, he will hold a meeting with the Army Commander and will not hold a meeting with the Minister of Defense.

Diab has provided an accurate description to Lebanon’s situation when he said that the collapse will happen very soon, because there is neither hope, nor a magic cure, nor money that will be spent on Lebanon. Even the $900 million that Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri spoke about in the plenary session, which will be granted by the International Monetary Fund (IMF) for Lebanon at the end of August, is still under study and no amounts has been determined. This fund is within the framework of the amounts allocated to the member states of IMF to curb the economic repercussions of coronavirus pandemic.

According to IMF sources, there are laws, and transparent measures that govern spending this fund. Sources expected that Lebanon will not be provided this fund for the same considerations that control the decision of donor countries, which is mainly because Lebanon is a bankrupt country where corruption prevails among its rulers. In addition to that, there isn’t a government that can spend the $900 million in the right place, and therefore this money is more likely to be wasted.

  • Sawt Beirut International