BEIRUT, Jan 24 (Reuters) – The USA introduced on Wednesday it will present $72 million as money stipends to Lebanon’s safety forces via a bespoke United Nations programme after a forex meltdown slashed salaries.
Lebanon’s forex has misplaced about 97% of its worth towards the greenback for the reason that nation’s monetary system collapsed in 2019, driving down most troopers’ month-to-month wages to round $80.
The navy has been squeezed so badly that its canteens stopped serving meat to troops in 2020 and it started providing sightseeing excursions in its helicopters to boost money.
U.S. Ambassador Dorothy Shea mentioned the scheme was a “short-term” measure “in mild of the urgency of Lebanon’s financial state of affairs”.
Asserting particulars alongside Lebanese Armed Forces Commander Joseph Aoun, she mentioned the programme would disburse $100 in money month-to-month for six months to members of the Lebanese Armed Forces and the Inner Safety Forces.
Each have obtained earlier safety assist from the U.S., together with coaching and tools, however it will be the primary time the U.S. had bolstered salaries, she mentioned.
Aoun thanked the U.S. and U.N. for backing “troops and their households” struggling in a rustic “on the breaking point.”
Navy sources instructed Reuters that some 5,000 drive members had give up with out authorization since 2019 and mentioned the money complement might assist forestall additional depletion of Lebanon’s forces.
The U.S. introduced its intent to supply monetary assist a yr in the past and arrange the particular mechanism with the U.N. within the hope different nations would additionally contribute, sources with information of the programme instructed Reuters.
Qatar pledged $60 million in June to assist troopers’ salaries with $100 each month. learn extra
Reporting by Maya Gebeily; Enhancing by Christina Fincher
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