On 7 December the European Council approved conclusions on Lebanon, in which it notes with increasing concern the grave financial, economic, social and political crisis that has taken root in the country and has been exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic and the 4 August explosion at Beirut port. The conclusions reiterate the EU’s strong support to the people of Lebanon at this crucial juncture.
The conclusions call on all Lebanese stakeholders and political forces to support the urgent formation of a mission-driven, credible and accountable government in Lebanon, able to implement the necessary reforms. They also set out the reforms needed to address Lebanon’s crisis and stress that the reform process needs to be inclusive and involve women, youth, civil society and the private sector in order to regain the trust of the Lebanese people.
The conclusions stress that the EU will continue to provide support for a people-centred recovery in Lebanon. To that end, the EU has launched, together with the United Nations and the World Bank, a ‘Reform, Recovery and Reconstruction Framework’ to ‘build back a better Lebanon’ guided by the principles of transparency, inclusion and accountability.
However, in addition to a people-centred recovery, EU substantial assistance for the reconstruction of a democratic, transparent, inclusive and prosperous Lebanon will continue to be conditional on tangible progress on the necessary reforms.
Council conclusions on Lebanon, 7 December 2020
“We urge member states to intensify their support to Lebanon” – joint letter of President Michel and President von der Leyen to the members of the European Council (press release, 6 August 2020)
“The people in Lebanon can count on the European Union” – press release following President Charles Michel’s visit to Beirut (press release 8 August 2020)