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Lebanon’s Defense Minister Discusses Relations With France and India

Lebanon’s Defense Minister, Maurice Sleem, held a protocol meeting with the Charge d’Affaires of the French Embassy in Lebanon, Ambassador Hervé Magro, at his office in Yarzeh on Wednesday. 

The meeting covered various aspects of Lebanese-French relations.

Ambassador Magro emphasized President Emmanuel Macron’s particular importance to the Lebanese file. He reiterated France’s continued support for Lebanon and the urgent need to elect a president for the republic as soon as possible.

During the meeting, discussions also touched upon military cooperation between Lebanon and France, particularly in the areas of military medicine, maritime capabilities, and other fields of collaboration.

The issue of Syrian refugees, especially the evolving situation, was also on the agenda. In this context, Defense Minister Sleem highlighted the grave consequences of the ongoing refugee crisis, stating that Lebanon could no longer bear the additional security, economic, and social burdens.

Minister Sleem expressed his gratitude to France and President Macron for their ongoing support to Lebanon and the Lebanese Army.

Subsequently, Minister Sleem met with the Charge d’Affaires of the Indian Embassy, Ambassador Muhammad Noor Rahman Sheikh, in a protocol visit. 

The meeting focused on bilateral relations, emphasizing military cooperation and India’s active participation in UNIFIL (United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon). They also discussed coordination with the Lebanese Army.

Minister Sleem praised the significant role played by the Indian contingent within UNIFIL and the excellent relations they have fostered with the local population. He emphasized the deep historical ties between Lebanon and India.

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