Senior US officials will head to Beirut in coming days in wake of Lebanon explosion

A file photo of Hale talking during a news conference in Beirut, Lebanon, January 14, 2019. (Reuters)

Two senior US officials are expected to head to Beirut in the coming days, diplomatic sources said Saturday.

US Agency for International Development (USAID) acting administrator, John Barsa, will head to Beirut on Sunday before the number three official at the State Department makes a separate trip midweek, the sources told Al Arabiya English.

David Hale, the Under Secretary of State for Political Affairs, may be in Beirut as soon as Wednesday, two sources said on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak to the media.

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Hale was previously the US ambassador to Lebanon from 2013 to 2015.

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Lebanon’s Prime Minister Hassan Diab said on Saturday that the deadly Beirut explosion happened due to corruption and mismanagement, and added that he will put forward a draft bill for snap parliamentary elections during a cabinet meeting on Monday.

In a live speech addressing the nation, Diab called for “everyone to come together to overcome this stage,” and said, “We are in a state of emergency related to the fate of the country and its future.”

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Last Update: Sunday, 09 August 2020 KSA 07:19 - GMT 04:19
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