UK Minister Stresses Support for Lebanon, Voices Concern over Govt. Delay


British Minister for the Middle East James Cleverly on Thursday stressed the UK’s support for Lebanon and voiced concern over the delay in forming a new government, during talks with top Lebanese officials.

In his talks with President Michel Aoun, Cleverly underscored Britain’s support for the Lebanese people in the difficult circumstances they are going through, emphasizing that the UK will continue to support Lebanon in all fields, the National News Agency said.

He also lauded the professionalism of the Lebanese Army and the ongoing cooperation with the British military, noting that the assistance for the army will continue.

Aoun for his part expressed gratitude for the aid that Britain has offered to Lebanon in the various military, humanitarian and economic sectors and its drive after the Beirut port explosion to alleviate the plight of those affected.

Cleverly also met with Speaker Nabih Berri and discussed with him the current situations in Lebanon, especially the financial and economic situations, urging the Lebanese to show unity in the face of the major challenges.

In talks with caretaker PM Hassan Diab, the British minister expressed the solidarity of his government with the Lebanese people and his country’s concern over the difficulties that are marring the new cabinet formation process, noting that the delay is impeding reform-related decision.

Cleverly also met with PM-designate Saad Hariri and the talks were continued over a lunch banquet. Hariri’s press office said the discussions tackled the latest political developments and the bilateral ties between Lebanon and the UK.

The British minister also met with Army Commander General Joseph Aoun and the talks addresses the affairs of Lebanon and the region, NNA said.



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