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Jordan affirms ‘unwavering’ support for Lebanon


The Jordan Times


AMMAN — Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Affairs Minister Ayman Safadi and Lebanese Foreign Minister Abdallah Bou Habib on Tuesday discussed bilateral relations and regional and international issues of mutual interest.
In joint press statements, Safadi affirmed the "strategic and historical" Jordanian-Lebanese relations, pointing to decades of cooperation, coordination and joint action to serve the interests of the two countries, and contribute to serving pan-Arab interests and issues in general, according to a ministry statement.
Safadi said that Jordan would continue to stand with Lebanon to help it overcome its current crisis and to "restore Lebanon's security and status as a beacon in the Arab region."
He added that the Kingdom's support for Lebanon, under the directives of His Majesty King Abdullah, is “unwavering”, but reform and addressing problems must begin from inside Lebanon. 
The minister expressed his belief that the Lebanese people will be able to overcome challenges and reach the necessary consensus in order to activate the institutional work to enable institutions to serve the interests of Lebanon and its people.
Safadi noted that his talks with Bou Habib addressed economic cooperation, including the provision of electricity to Lebanon through Syria, after a funding agreement with the World Bank is signed.
With regard to Syrian refugees, Safadi said that providing a decent living for them is both the responsibility of host countries and the international community, adding that the Kingdom will continue to assist refugees until conditions allow them to return to their home.
The minister said that the Kingdom works in coordination with the international community to find a solution to the Syrian crisis through Jordan’s initiative based on an Arab role, which is directly engaged with the Syrian government and takes a step-by-step approach to achieve a gradual solution that will end the crisis and address all its political, humanitarian and security ramifications.
He and his Lebanese counterpart discussed the Palestinian issue and efforts to halt the deterioration in the occupied Palestinian territories and address extremist agendas that attempt to obliterate the rights of the Palestinian people. In particular, they discussed the Palestinians’ right to an independent, sovereign state with Jerusalem as its capital on the pre-1967 lines, as per the two-state solution.
The minister said that the Kingdom has reiterated its position of standing by the Palestinian people and supporting their rights, continuing to regional and international coordination to stop the ongoing human rights violations and attempts to change the historical and legal status quo of the Islamic and Christian holy sites in occupied Jerusalem.
For his part, Bou Habib conveyed the Lebanese people’s gratitude to His Majesty and the Jordanian people for the humanitarian assistance dispatched to Lebanon at every tragedy and disaster that has befallen the country, specifically after the large explosion that occurred in the port of Beirut in August 2020.
He noted that the Lebanese government supports Jordan regarding recent events, and condemns escalation by the Israeli occupation authorities in occupied Palestine, specifically in Jerusalem.
The minster also stressed the importance of the Hashemite Custodianship over Christian and Islamic holy sites in Jerusalem. 
He called for a common, coordinating framework for Syrian refugees, noting that this “humanitarian tragedy is not only the tragedy of civilians displaced from their land and homeland, but also a significant challenge for Lebanon at the economic, social and especially political and security levels”.

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