The Spanish magazine “Atlayar” published a report in which it shed light on the catastrophic situation in Lebanon.
This country, which is ruled by a group of officials, has proven its failure every time Lebanon experiences an economic crisis. Some observers in the world have classified the government of this country as the cause of the stark crisis that crushed what remained of Lebanon.
The magazine affirmed in its translated report:homeland“Lebanon is going through a period of unprecedented crisis, and the delicate political, social and economic situation pushes the Lebanese, every day, to earn a living, to struggle to survive. In fact, the problem of fuel shortage leads to a lack of other basic resources. A humanitarian disaster befell this country, which made some regional neighbors move quickly to find a solution.
decisive Egyptian intervention
On this basis, the Lebanese Minister of Energy and Water, Raymond Ghajar, headed to the Jordanian capital, Amman, on Wednesday, to meet with the Jordanian Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources Hala Al-Zawati, the head of the Syrian Oil and Mineral Resources Sector Bassam Tohme, and the Egyptian Minister of Petroleum and Mineral Resources Tariq Al-Mulla.
The aim of the conversation is to provide Lebanon with sufficient quantities that will help it meet its deep energy needs.
The Arab ministers, together with their Lebanese counterparts, pledged to provide up to 17 hours of electricity to Lebanon, a measure that would alleviate the crisis of the country’s regular power outages, which usually exceed 10 hours.
Minister Al-Mulla hopes that the agreement will be implemented “as soon as possible”, as his country will play a major and decisive role in resolving the crisis.
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Natural gas will be passed from Egypt through Syria and Jordan to Lebanon. Once the quantities of fuel arrive, the country will be supplied with enough to fill the gaps in the production shortage suffered by the Electricité du Liban (EDL), which currently contributes insufficient amounts of energy, although it is the main supplier in Lebanon.
In fact, the gas pipeline in use has been in use for more than 20 years and has not been used for a decade, so it will be subject to revisions and modifications before it is commissioned.
“It is almost ready, but there are some things that need to be fixed, and the development of the canal may take a few weeks,” Jordanian Minister Hala Zawati said in a press conference. For his part, Al-Mulla announced that some terms of the contract “must be subject to review.”
Lebanon is looking for financing
In a related context, Lebanon is working in cooperation with the United Nations to find a way to provide funds to it. As the country does not have the resources to handle the payments, more long-term debt will hurt Beirut. In any case, if the project is implemented, Lebanese families will no longer rely on costly small privately owned generators.
The Lebanese government was also forced to withdraw part of the fuel import subsidy, a move that caused the price of gasoline to increase by 60 percent. The desperate situation in which many families are living has led to attacks on service stations and warehouses, events that forced the security forces to protect these centers.
On the other hand, the consequences of the lack of energy lead to a shortage of important resources such as medicines and other essential supplies.
Some experts also believe that the country will need a supply of about 3,500 megawatts, an amount that Lebanon hopes to generate through a power plant located in the north of the country.
Syria and regional isolation
It is worth noting that Syria’s participation jeopardizes the achievement of the agreement, as Bashar al-Assad’s regime faces a set of sanctions imposed by Washington, as a result of its brutal policy of repression against the civilian population.
The representative of the Alawi leader, Bassam Tohme, confirmed that Damascus is ready to cooperate.
The minister declared that “Syria will do its utmost for the success of the plan.”
This Syrian position, if any, indicates that a tight strategy has been followed to bring positions closer and restore relations with its regional neighbors, after years of estrangement and isolation.
Iran behind the scenes
The prolonged political siege on Lebanon has abated, with Najib Mikati’s appointment in July as Prime Minister to succeed Saad Hariri. The man, who occupies the position of prime minister for the third time, has so far failed to open the doors to a political transition or to take decisive decisions, to find material solutions to put an end to the energy crisis. This made Hezbollah unilaterally control the situation in parallel with the government, as it started negotiations with the aim of providing Lebanon with fuel, and this scenario allows Tehran to intervene.
Mikati himself was one of the first to warn Hezbollah of the potential consequences that the Lebanese economy might face if it continued to supply black gold from Iran.
Hezbollah is a state within a state, which controls the country de facto and maintains strong ties with the Republic of Iran. This relationship has provided the party with military and political capital in the past, and the close cooperation is expected to continue in the near future.
It is also known that at least one Iranian oil tanker has sailed in recent days near the Lebanese coast, carrying fuel to supply the electricity grid, and to inspect the delicate energy situation in the region.
This was officially announced by Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah, and promised that more fuel would be imported from Iran.
He was so audacious that he suggested to the Iranian authorities the possibility of exploiting the oil fields in the border waters of the Mediterranean with Israel, after considering the issue of border demarcation.
Hezbollah stressed, “As long as the state needs energy resources, we will continue these operations without a doubt.” The Iranian intervention indicates that Tehran is ignoring the embargo imposed by the United States on its companies, after its withdrawal from the nuclear agreement.
In conclusion, these solutions cannot be radical, especially after the Lebanese currency has lost 90 percent of its value since 2019, and inflation has risen to 200 percent.
In addition to the fact that Lebanon’s hospitals can only operate with half the amount of gas available during the pandemic, wastewater treatment operations have slowed, leaving millions of Prime Time Zone without access to clean water and putting public health and the environment at risk. Therefore, the international community should take the necessary measures to put an end to this worsening crisis.
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