The World Bank has called the Lebanon crisis one of the worst depressions in modern history, as half the population lives in poverty.
Lebanon is just days away from a “social explosion,” warned interim Prime Minister Hassan Diab, who has called on the international community to save a country in a deep economic crisis.
The World Bank has described the crisis in Lebanon as one of the crises worst depressions of modern history. The currency has lost more than 90% of its value and more than half of the population has been driven into poverty.
The rage is over fuel shortage it has spilled into fights at gas stations and the prime minister seemed to warn of the possibility of further unrest.
“Lebanon is just days away from the social explosion. The Lebanese are facing this dark fate alone, “Diab said in a speech at a meeting with ambassadors and representatives of diplomatic missions in Beirut.
1/5 PM Devil during the ambassadors meeting: We meet here on the streets of Lebanon, there are queues of cars in front of gas stations, and there are those looking for a pill and a can of baby formula in pharmacies. As for households, Lebanese live without electricity
– Presidency of the Council of Ministers 🇱🇧 (@grandserail) July 6, 2021
Translation: Devil during the ambassadors meeting: As we gather here, the streets of Lebanon are full of cars queuing in front of gas stations. And there are those who look in pharmacies for medicines and a can of baby formulas. Inside their own homes, Lebanese live without electricity.
Diab has been working as a director since he resigned following the catastrophic August 4th Explosion of the port of Beirut. Since then, fragile sectarian politicians have not been able to agree on a new government.
Diab also said only a new cabinet could restart talks with the International Monetary Fund (IMF).
“This government has no right to resume negotiations with the IMF to implement the recovery plan set by the cabinet, because that entails obligations for the next government that it may not approve,” he said.
The European Union’s foreign policy chief told Lebanon’s leaders last month that they were to blame for the political and economic crisis and that some could face sanctions if they continued to obstruct steps to form a new government and implement reform.
Diab noted repeated requests for assistance to be linked to reform, but said the “imposed siege” on Lebanon did not affect the corrupt, an apparent reference to politicians.
He said Lebanese were running out of patience and that “linking Lebanon’s assistance to the formation of a new government has become a threat to the lives of Lebanese and to the Lebanese entity.”