The Lebanese Prime Minister Dr. Selin al Hoss has gone to Saudi Arabia seeking cash?
The Lebanese Prime Minister Dr. Selin al Hoss has gone to Saudi Arabia seeking cash to rebuild his country after 19 months of civil war. He's also expected to visit Kuwait. Dr. al Hoss is reported to be seeking an initial 100 million United States dollars to begin Lebanon's economic recovery.
SYNOPSIS: One move towards getting the country back to normal has been the re-opening of Beirut harbour. Before operations stopped two years ago it was one of the main links between Europe and the Middle East. Now after suffering heavy damage, facilities at the port will have to be extensively rebuilt.
It's expected to take several years to finish the job. The Port Authority met last week to plan the reconstruction and workmen were brought into service. Ships arriving in the near future will have their cargoes transported immediately because there are no warehouses.
An eight man cabinet to help reconstruct lebanon formed by Dr. Al Hoss met this week (15 December) for its first working session. It has set up committees to deal with public and private rebuilding, and to give aid to wounded Lebanese.
Losses to the Lebanese economy through civil war have been estimated at more than four billion dollars. The civil war, in addition, has left some 300,000 people destitute.
Foreign diplomats believe that Saudi Arabia and Kuwait have already pledged nearly two thirds of the 90 million dollars needed to finance the Arab peace force in Lebanon. Saudi Arabia's King Khalid has also made available five million dollars for people left destitute by the war.