“I also underscored the importance for Lebanon’s political leaders to implement reforms as called for by the Lebanese people,” Pompeo tweeted about a phone call between the two.
Pompeo told President Michel Aoun that Washington would send aid for rebuilding demolished neighborhoods in the Lebanese capital due to the catastrophic Aug. 4 explosions at the Port of Beirut. This was reported by the Lebanese presidency.
Pompeo also touched on the recent US-brokered negotiations between Beirut and Tel Aviv to demarcate their maritime borders.
Spoke today with Lebanese President Michel Aoun and welcomed the start of negotiations between Lebanon and Israel to agree on a common maritime boundary. I also underscored the importance for Lebanon's political leaders to implement reforms as called for by the Lebanese people.— Secretary Pompeo (@SecPompeo) October 19, 2020
State Department Spokesperson Morgan Ortagus said that Pompeo “also observed the one year anniversary of the October 17 protests.”
Nationwide anti-government protests broke out in October 2019 as hundreds of thousands of Lebanese demanded an end to endemic corruption and decades of sectarianism and clientelism.
While Lebanon has been without a fully functioning government since Hassan Diab stepped down as prime minister following the Beirut blasts.
Ortagus said Pompeo “noted that the United States looks forward to the formation of a Lebanese government committed to, and which has the ability to implement, reforms that can lead to economic opportunity, better governance, and an end to endemic corruption.”