Stockholm Conference: Siniora's Impassioned Plea for $500m
Lebanon's Prime minister has made an 'impassioned plea' for help today - 31.08.06. Fuad Siniora told delegates at an international donors' conference in Sweden that 'Lebanon's recovery from its civil war had been "wiped out in days".'
Jihad Azour, the finance minister, told the Financial Times that 'Lebanon needed between $400m (€314m, £212m) and $500m in short-term assistance for the quick rehabilitation of infrastructure and schools, social projects for vulnerable groups, and assistance in de-mining border areas where Israeli-fired cluster bombs are preventing farmers from returning to their land'.
According to the Government of Lebanon report (see in pdf) to the conference. 'The main objective of the national early recovery process is to establish the critical elements for Lebanon to resume its progress towards sustainable growth and development. In particular, the national early recovery process seeks to:
(a) Provide the conditions for the return of the displaced, including temporary shelter and safety from the immediate threat of unexploded ordnances; and
(b) Restore minimum capacity in terms of infrastructure, access to basic social services and income generating activities, pending full reconstruction.