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Week In Review

Fear of US prevents Lebanon from getting desperately needed food, medicines and fuel

Lebanon’s economy is in a tailspin.

Supermarket shelves are empty, its currency, the lira has lost 80% of its value against the US dollar since October and the situation has been worsened by the “Caesar Act” passed by US Congress to exert additional pressure on Syria that has also adversely impacted Lebanon.

Under these circumstances, the Lebanese government would jump on the offer from Iran to supply it food stuff, medicines and fuel.

But it is terrified of US sanctions imposed on Iran under UN Security Council resolution 1929 passed in June 2010.

That resolution, however, was terminated by UNSC Resolution 2231 passed in January 2016 after the CJPOA (aka the “Iran Nuclear Deal”) with the P5+1 countries came into effect.

Shafiq al-Masri, professor of international law, states that “American sanctions are not legally binding on Lebanon, as they are state-to-state sanctions and not international sanctions against Iran.”

Despite the people’s desperate plight, “Iranian cargo ships in Lebanese waters have been prevented from docking and unloading over fears the move may lead to the extension of US sanctions onto the Mediterranean state, according to a report by Al-Hurra.”

And Iran is not asking for payment in US dollars; it will accept barter goods or payment even in the Lebanese lira that is sinking fast.

This was reported by the US-based Middle East Monitor.

People have resorted to Facebook to barter and exchange clothes and furniture for food.

Courtesy: Middleeastmonitor

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