BEIRUT, LEBANON (9:30 A.M.) – The British Ambassador to Beirut, Chris Rampling, expressed his belief that the current path of Lebanon is worrying and that the long-awaited economic reforms are more important than ever.
Rampling said in an interview with Independent Arabia that Britain expects the government and the International Monetary Fund to agree on a clear framework before the program.
He made it clear that external financing will not flow and will not be a product for the Lebanese people in the absence of comprehensive economic reforms implemented by the Lebanese authorities.
The ambassador emphasized the necessity for the local players to avoid the pattern of Hezbollah Secretary-General Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah’s speech and his equations in terms of heading east in Lebanon’s economic dealings, and threatening to respond to the death sentences.
He continued, saying: “Lebanon unfortunately is in a hole from which it will not come out if the Lebanese do not look to their national interest … If this does not happen, the situation will continue to worsen and I cannot predict which direction will proceed.”
The British ambassador to Lebanon added: “Last year, a decision was taken to ban Hezbollah in its entirety to include the political wing, and this is an important part of our policy.”
Noting that one of the reasons for the decision is London’s vision that Hezbollah has been operating for several years across the region, in direct violation of the policy of distancing oneself, and destabilizing the region and the stability of Lebanon as well.
Regarding the options presented by the Hezbollah leader to go east in Lebanon’s economic dealings, the British Ambassador to Lebanon said, “I do not know what is behind his words, but the local players should avoid this type of communication, and this type of equation.” .
Chris Rampling stressed that “Lebanon suffers from serious political, security and economic problems, but the serious and worrying decline today is on the economic and social axis with high rates of poverty and unemployment.”