House Speaker Nabih Berri continued Friday to follow-up on the repercussions of the massive explosion of the Beirut port and how to face its catastrophic effects, and continued to receive more cables of condolences and support for Lebanon from many heads of Arab, Islamic and international parliaments.
In this context, Berri met at Ain El-Tineh with the Director of the Middle East and Central Asia Department at the International Monetary Fund, Jihad Azour, where talks touched on the general prevailing conditions, especially at the financial and economic levels.
The Speaker also met with Foreign Affairs and Emigrants Minister, Charbel Wehbe, who said after the meeting that discussions focused mainly on the massive blast that occurred in the port of Beirut and its serious and negative repercussions.
Wehbe expressed his heartfelt condolences over the fallen martyrs and his sincere wishes for speedy recoveries for the wounded, adding that “all efforts must be focused on searching for the missing and giving every opportunity to find those who are still alive and treat the injured.”
He indicated that efforts must also be focused on the restoration of citizens’ demolished homes and providing them with temporary housing until the restoration process is completed.
“We also discussed the issue of the Foreign Affairs Ministry which has been badly damaged, and I believe that the Bustros Palace is no longer suitable for restoration and cannot be used anymore. We must search intensively for an alternative, and I will do my best to secure a substitute to the headquarters of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and Emigrant in the nearest opportunity, God willing, so that we can continue to have the appropriate place to receive official guests, foreign dignitaries, and Arab brothers who love and want to visit Lebanon,” pledged Wehbe.
Ambassador of Egypt
The House Speaker later met in the afternoon with Egyptian Ambassador to Lebanon, Yasser Al-Alawi, who briefed him on the support that the Arab Republic of Egypt will provide to Lebanon and the Lebanese to overcome this painful ordeal.
On emerging, Al-Alawi said that he discussed with Speaker Berri the latest developments and the repercussions and magnitude of the disaster caused by the explosion in Beirut’s port.
Al-Alawi affirmed Egyptian President, Abdel Fattah Al-Sisi’s full solidarity with Lebanon, which has been translated in the air bridge that started yesterday, including the arrival of four planes, one every 48 hours, carrying batches of relief and medical aids.
He added that 20 tons of flour will also arrive tomorrow to compensate for the losses of the wheat supply due to the explosion, including other batches of medicines as well.
Moreover, the Egyptian Ambassador indicated that groups of medical teams are in contact with Lebanese hospitals to discuss their required special needs. He added that there will also be a contribution by the Federation of Egyptian Industries, consisting of glass and aluminum for restoration of affected building in the Lebanese capital.
“Lebanon is dear to the heart of every Egyptian, and all of Egypt contributes to the air bridge of the four components I outlined to you…and there is a contribution from the noble Al-Azhar and from the civil organizations…Solidarity is from all of Egypt with all of Lebanon…and what we offer is from Egypt that is alive in your mind to Lebanon that is always in our minds,” Al-Alawi concluded.
On another note, Speaker Berri continued to receive condolences and support cables in solidarity with Lebanon, namely from: Head of the Belgian Parliament, Patrick Doyle; Head of the Algerian National People’s Assembly, Sleiman Shanin, Moroccan Parliament Speaker, Habib Al-Maliki, and former Iraqi Prime Minister Iyad Allawi, in addition to a phone call from Pakistani Parliament Speaker Asad Qaiser.
Source: National News Agency