Launching the program to support members of the Lebanese army and internal security forces by the United States, in coordination with the United Nations Development Program
On 25 of December 2023, the Embassy of the United States in Beirut and the United Nations Development Program, (UNDP) have announced the launching of the LAF /ISF/Livelihood Support Program, and which provides 72 million dollars on the form of temporary financial support to the members of the LAF, the Lebanese Army Forces and the Internal Security Forces (ISF). This financial aid will provide each eligible member 100 dollars monthly, and this step by virtue of the United States law, and for six months. And by implementing this new convention, the United Nations Development program will work with a provider of financial services on the national level in order to start to spend this money by pursuing to achieve the right procedures. And have joined her Excellency, the Ambassador of the United States Shea, on this occasion, the Resident Representative of the UNDP Program, Mrs. Melanie Hauenstein, and the Commander of Chief of the Lebanese Army, General Joseph Aoun, and the Director General of the ISF, Major General Imad Osman.
And in her speech, the Ambassador Shea has insisted that on the light of the economic crisis in Lebanon, we have recommended and we obtained the approval of the American Congress in order to renew the allocating of our financial aids to support men and women who work in the Lebanese Army Forces, and the Internal Security Forces, and who are exercising their duties with loyalty to protect their homeland by according a financial aid that allows to insure the materials of surviving with their families. And she added “this aid that we are announcing today will insure to all eligible members and this by virtue of the United States law, the sum of 100 dollars for six months, and in a total of 72 million dollars. And she said “this temporary support will allow -and this is the first time that the United States offers this kind of financial aid to the military forces in Lebanon – an aid to the soldiers and the well-versed service members, while we are insisting on the politics leaders to elect a president, and to form a government, and to apply economical reforms immediately.
In her turn, the Representative Resident of the UNDP in Lebanon, Mrs. Melanie Haueinstein has insisted that the “security and stability and the rapid implementation of the reform are the essentials conditions of the development in Lebanon”. Also, she stressed that the transparency and the accountability are two essential’ things in order to implement this project which is of this importance. And the UNDP program, while it is the implementation entity, will work with reliable partners in order to ensure the best receiving of this money. And the UNDP has been assisted by an agency recognized on the international level, as a third party, in order to control the operation. And we have put sever procedures to assure the well implementation of the project, and we have put severe procedures with high criteria of interest in the domain of human rights.
And the Commander in Chief of the Lebanese Army Forces, Joseph Aoun, has said that “the interest of the international community to preserve the military forces, ensures that we will not allow Lebanon to collapse on the security front. And this will be possible by means of his permanent support to the Lebanese Army Forces, and by its engagement to the UNIFIL acting in the South. Lebanon is exposed to several dangers and challenges, because of his geographic location, and the complicated crisis that it is facing, and because of the presence of Syrians and Palestinians refugees. And because of all these reasons, the influence of its collapse doesn’t touch Lebanon only as a country, but there will be indirect consequences on the security and regional atmosphere. We have promised our people, that the Army, and despite of all challenges that it is facing, will be always loyal for its oath of defending the Lebanese citizens, and the dignity of the homeland, despite of the big and severe sacrifices. And he added: “we hope that Lebanon will recover its brightness and its wellness, and its people and especially the new generation, will restitute the faith in it. We promise that the military institution will be always solid, despite of all the rumors and accusations. It will be always acting on silence and sacrifice with no limits. And that because of its military members who are well determined and brave.
And the Director of the ISF , Major General Imad Osman, has stressed that “ I stand today here, and I am handling with me the problems of the ISF , the institution that was founded before the birth of the Big Lebanon State, and which has spent its age by according sacrifices in order to ensure the security and stability and the freedom of the residents on the Lebanese territory, the institution that has took a vision “ together to a more safe community “, an institution that puts the engagement of the criteria of human rights in its relation with people , and it has put this on its priorities. I am standing while I am handling the problems of the ISF elements and their families, these families who are coming from several regions of the Lebanese community, with the goal of unifying their sons below the ISF flag in order to serve people, and to ensure their security, and their freedom. These families who are suffering from the difficulties of the economic and financial crisis that are combating the Lebanese community, and this case has severe consequences on the life of the ISF element who is obliged to face two things: from a first side, he should ensure the food for his family, and their needs and their education. And for the second side, he should be loyal to his oath and to his institution which has conserve it for all his service duration. The launching of this program, represents the continuation of the United States engagement to support the radical efforts to the LAF, the ISF, in order to ensure the stability of Lebanon and its sovereignty.
About the UNDP.
The UNDP program working in Lebanon since 1986, as a development partner to support the economic development, in addition to the work with the municipalities in order to ensure the essentials services to the hosting communities, and to enhance the clean energy and to manage the solid garbage, and to develop the governance and the sovereignty of law, and to offer the support to the elections, and to work on the empowering of women and youth. Also, the UNDP program works with the Lebanese Army Forces and the ISF since several years in deferent fields, and especially in the demining, the community policing, and the new energy solutions.