Macron says he will push for a new approach on Lebanon

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Reuters

French President Emmanuel Macron has spearheaded international efforts to help Lebanon. (Credit: Ludovic Marin/Pool/Reuters)

PARIS — French President Emmanuel Macron said on Thursday he would push for a new approach in the coming weeks on Lebanon as the country’s main actors had made no progress over the last seven months to resolve the economic and political crisis.

Paris has spearheaded international efforts to help the former French protectorate as it faces its deepest crisis since the 1975-90 Civil War, but has failed so far to persuade squabbling politicians to adopt a reform road map and form a new government to unlock international aid.

Protests have grown since the currency hit new lows, deepening public anger over Lebanon’s financial collapse.

“The time of the test of responsibility is coming to an end and there will be a need in the coming weeks, in a very clear manner, to change approach and the methods, because we can’t leave the Lebanese people since last August in the situation in which they are,” Macron said, alluding to the Aug. 4 explosion at Beirut port that devastated parts of the capital.

Macron gave no other details.

A French diplomat said on Wednesday that international partners would seek to increase pressure on Lebanon’s politicians in the coming months, although sanctions against individuals in the immediate term were not being envisaged.

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