Macron threatens to impose sanctions on Lebanon officials, including Bassil: Source

Gebran Bassil, a Lebanese politician and head of the Free Patriotic movement, talks during an interview with Reuters in Sin-el-fil. (Reuters)

French President Emmanuel Macron has threatened to impose sanctions on several political figures in Lebanon, including former foreign minister Gebran Bassil, according to a diplomatic source.

The diplomatic source confirmed that sanctions would include France withholding any funds stored abroad and banning the issuing of visas on sanctioned figures.

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The possible sanctions would include Sunni and Christian Lebanese figures, not only Shia ones, added the source.

A Lebanese youth hugs French President Emmanuel Macron during a visit to the Gemmayzeh neighbourhood, which has suffered extensive damage due to a massive explosion in the Lebanese capital, on August 6, 2020. (AFP)

A Lebanese youth hugs French President Emmanuel Macron during a visit to the Gemmayzeh neighbourhood, which has suffered extensive damage due to a massive explosion in the Lebanese capital, on August 6, 2020. (AFP)

The new information on potential sanctions come after Macron’s recent visit to Beirut following the devastating explosion that erupted on the port of the Lebanese capital last Tuesday that killed at least 158 people and destroyed swathes of the city.

The diplomatic source pointed out that Macron met with the heads of the Lebanese parties, telling them that corruption must stop.

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Macron, according to the diplomatic source, gave a three-week period to Lebanese figures to reach a new political compact and form a government of experts. Macron asked representatives of civil society that he met to also present alternative solutions.

The diplomatic source confirmed that Macron will return within three weeks during the first of September, and according to the assessment of the situation, would decide on the next steps to be taken.

Protesters hurled rocks at security forces blocking a road near Lebanon’s parliament on Sunday in a second day of protests against the government after a huge explosion last Tuesday killed dozens of people and injured thousands.

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Last Update: Monday, 10 August 2020 KSA 13:48 - GMT 10:48
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