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  Sunday, September 22, 2019
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Russia will offer Lebanon assistance in rebuilding its infrastructure and help with financial aid through UN funds
Russia will offer Lebanon assistance in rebuilding its infrastructure and help with financial aid through UN funds, Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov said Thursday. "We will offer concrete assistance in rebuilding the infrastructure - roads and bridges," Lavrov told a news conference before his trip to Beirut. "But we have to understand the plans that the Lebanese government has and how our means could meet their demands." The UN is presiding over humanitarian efforts and is to deploy 15,000 peacekeepers in southern Lebanon to ensure a ceasefire after month-long fighting between the Lebanon-based Hizbollah radical group and Israel, which claimed the lives of more than 1,000 Lebanese and about 160 Israelis. "We are also considering financial aid, primarily through various funds under UN structures," the foreign minister said. Russia has already provided $2 million worth of aid to Lebanon during the crisis, when it sent four aircraft with goods requested by the Lebanese government to Cyprus, where they were passed on to UN workers, who delivered them to Lebanon. Lavrov said Russia could provide financial aid through such UN structures as the World Food Program, the World Health Organization and the UN High Commissioner for Refugees. "We can send to Lebanon substantial funds that Russia allocates to these structures, in accordance with existing regulations," Lavrov said. Russia is also considering participation in the international peacekeeping force in Lebanon, the foreign ministry earlier said.
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