Arabi Cites 'Arab Consensus' over Assisting Lebanese Armyإقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية
Arab League chief Nabil al-Arabi said Sunday that there is “Arab consensus” over the issue of providing military equipment to the Lebanese Army.
The promised support is aimed at enabling the army to “preserve the country's security, protect the state's constitutional institutions and safeguard national unity and Lebanon's social fabric,” Arabi said in a speech at the opening of an extraordinary meeting for the League's permanent representatives in Cairo.
He noted that the talks were held “at Lebanon's request, in the framework of following up on the implementation of the Kuwait (Arab) Summit in terms of offering military support to the Lebanese Army.”
Arabi pointed out that the decision to assist the army was taken “unanimously” during the summit.
He said Sunday's meeting was significant because “it comes two days before the Rome meeting which will discuss means to support Lebanon.”
A Lebanese Army delegation took part in the meeting to explain the situations in Lebanon and clarify the real needs of the military institution, according to media reports.
The delegation demonstrated a detailed report containing the army's technical and logistical needs.
Speaking on the sidelines of the meeting, Lebanon's permanent envoy to the Arab League Khaled Ziadeh noted that “the Lebanese Army is currently protecting the southern border in the face of the (Israeli) enemy, in addition to its role in combating terrorism and preserving the state's constitutional institutions.”
The representatives' meeting was initially aimed at discussing Lebanon's request regarding the resolutions of the Kuwait summit, but the Iraqi crisis was put on the agenda in light of the stunning offensive of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant, which has seized vast swathes of territory.
On June 7, visiting Italian Foreign Minister Federica Mogherini stressed that the army should be offered all the necessary support to maintain stability in Lebanon.
Mogherini's visit was aimed at discussing with senior Lebanese officials the ongoing preparations for the Rome conference.
Italy had previously announced that the International Support Group for Lebanon would hold a meeting in Rome in June to boost the Lebanese Armed Forces' capabilities and ease the Syrian refugee crisis.