Cyprus announces Lebanon reconstruction project
Nicosia, Oct 10 – Cyprus informed the Government of Lebanon that it will be funding the project “Good Governance for Enhanced Post-War Reconstruction: An Integrated Approach to Respond to Recovery in Southern Lebanon” over the next two years.
In his address during the Lebanon reconstruction project announcement in Nicosia on Wednesday, Permanent Secretary of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Ambassador Alexandros N. Zenon, said that the terrible events that occurred in Lebanon last year and the tragic conditions that they have inflicted on the country and its people could not but have generated the support and solidarity of the international community and the people of Cyprus, reminding them of the Turkish invasion of 1974.
He said Cyprus responded immediately to the needs faced by the Lebanese people and became active in the international efforts at providing immediate relief, placing its ports and airports at the disposal of the international community, and Cyprus was used as a launching base for the delivery of aid into Lebanon, and for the evacuation of civilians – Lebanese and foreigners alike – from the war zone.
Mr. Zenon also said that after the war ended, Cyprus participated in the Stockholm pledging conference for the reconstruction of Lebanon, whereby a contribution of $100.000 was made and which has already been delivered to Lebanon.
In addition, after a suggestion put forward by the Minister of Foreign Affairs, the Development Cooperation Policy-making Body – the Inter-ministerial Body dealing with Cyprus’ Development Cooperation and Humanitarian Aid Activities, decided to include Lebanon in the list of top priority countries for Cypriot Development Cooperation, as of 2007.
Ambassador Zenon also said that in the past few months, CYPRUSAID staff, from both the Ministry of Foreign Affairs as well as the Planning Bureau, which is jointly responsible for development Cooperation and Humanitarian Aid activities, have been evaluating projects under preparation in Lebanon, with the close cooperation of the Embassy of the Republic of Cyprus in Beirut.
Cyprus has also agreed to contribute €500,000 ($710,000) in 2007 and €250,000 ($355,000) in 2008'. “This contribution is the largest ever made by the Republic of Cyprus’ service for Development Cooperation and Humanitarian Aid and constitutes a concrete proof of the feelings of friendship, respect and mutual support that have always linked Cyprus and Lebanon”, Ambassador Zenon concluded.