Friday, January 26, 2007

US assistance to Lebanon-Fact Sheet

US Department of State
Fact Sheet
Bureau of Public Affairs

Washington, DC
January 25, 2007

United States Supports the Recovery of Lebanon

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"The United States will coordinate closely with other major donors, with the international financial institutions, and with all who are committed to Lebanon's future┬ů Through our common efforts, we must help the people of Lebanon to emerge┬ůmore prosperous and stronger than ever." -- Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice

The United States is helping Lebanon to recover after last summer's conflict, and is committed to a sovereign, democratic and prosperous Lebanon. The United States led the international effort to bring urgently needed humanitarian relief to the people of Lebanon. A comprehensive U.S. aid package continues to support reconstruction, development and security efforts throughout Lebanon. The United States also coordinates with the international community's efforts to foster Lebanon's long-term development and fiscal stabilization.

PROPOSED U.S. ASSISTANCE TO LEBANON TOTALS OVER $1 BILLION

  • $770 million in new assistancerequested in FY 2007 supplemental budget
  • Over $230 million pledged at August 2006 Stockholm conference, over half already committed
HUMANITARIAN ASSISTANCE
  • U.S.-funded programs reaching more than 2 million people in over 500 villages in 24 of Lebanon's 26 districts
  • Enough wheat, wheat flour, and lentil commodities through the UN World Food Program to reach an estimated 714,000 people
  • Water and sanitation services for more than 600,000 people
  • Cash-for-work and training programs for Lebanese citizens who lost livelihoods
  • Transitional and winterization shelter supplies for host families and displaced persons

RECONSTRUCTION ASSISTANCE

  • Rehabilitation and upgrading of schools
  • Reconstruction begun on Mudeirej Bridge, a critical transportation link
  • $120 million from Citigroup and Overseas Private Investment Corporation for loans to businesses and homeowners, through Lebanese banks
  • Oil spill cleanup in the Byblos and Anfeh areas

SECURITY ASSISTANCE

  • New equipment and spare parts for Lebanese security services
  • Training programs, offered with international partners
  • One-quarter of costs of United Nations Peacekeeping Force (UNIFIL) mission
  • Funding mine action organizations that have cleared more than 73,000 pieces of unexploded ordnance

U.S. PRIVATE SECTOR PARTICIPATION

President Bush sent four U.S. CEOs and Assistant Secretary of State Dina Habib Powell to Lebanon in September 2006 to launch a public-private Partnership to assist the Lebanese people. The delegation included Craig Barrett, Intel Corporation; John Chambers, Cisco Systems, Inc.; Yousif Ghafari, Ghafari, Inc.; and Ray Irani, Occidental Petroleum Corporation. Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice met with the Partnership CEOs at the January 2007 Lebanon Donors Conference in Paris, where Microsoft also joined the Partnership leaders. The Partnership is working with non-governmental organizations (NGOs) that have a proven track record in Lebanon to address the immediate needs of adequate housing, education, and workforce training.

The NGOs include:

  • Habitat for Humanity
  • The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF)
  • American Near East Refugee Aid (ANERA)
  • Mercy Corps

The Partnership also will:

  • Donate an International Gateway and an Internet Exchange Point to Lebanon to improve the speed and efficiency of Internet traffic flow into the country.
  • Identify and place 500 Lebanese interns in various fields in Lebanon and the U.S. over the next three years.
  • Announce 25 priority projects in key industries of technology, tourism, banking and finance, agribusiness, health care, and manufacturing.
  • Establish community access centers to provide on-line access to job training, health care information, on-line education, and government services.