Tag: lebanon

The Coming Fracture of Saudi Arabia

The Bible’s book of Galatians, VI teaches, «as you sow, so shall you reap». And for Saudi Arabia, which has overtly and covertly supported rebellions in Libya, Syria, Iraq, Yemen, Ethiopia, Philippines, and Lebanon that have led to civil wars and inter-religious strife, the day of reckoning may soon be at hand. The present Saudi king, Salman bin Abdul Aziz, is the last of the sons of the first Saudi king, Abdul Aziz al Saud, who will ever sit on the Saudi throne. After Salman dies, Saudi leadership will pass to a new generation of Saudi royals. But not all the descendants of the first Saudi king are happy about how the future succession may turn out.

Salman named his nephew, Mohammed bin Nayef, as crown prince after firing his half-brother, Mugrin bin Abdul Aziz, as crown prince after the death of King Abdullah in 2015. For good measure, Salman also named his son, Mohammad bin Salman, who is little-known outside the kingdom, as deputy prime minister. The 30-year old Mohammad bin Salman is seen by some as the eventual crown prince after King Salman figures out some way to ease Mohammad bin Nayef, the Interior Minister and close friend of the United States, out of the position of heir apparent to the throne.

UN Envoy: Lebanon’s Solutions Need to Be Identified, Carried Out by Lebanon

A Senior UN official in Lebanon says that there’s a tendency in Lebanon to look to regional and international actors for solutions. However, the “Iron Lady” believes that ultimately solutions need to be identified and carried out by Lebanon itself.

Sigrid Kaag, the United Nations Special Coordinator for Lebanon (UNSCOL), made the remarks in an exclusive interview with Tasnim News Agency in early October during an official visit to Tehran.

In the interview, the Dutch diplomat also discussed issues surrounding her previous tenure as the head of the joint Organization for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons-United Nations mission for the destruction of Syria’s chemical weapons between October 2013 and September 2014.

The following is the full text of the interview:

Lebanese Drug Policy Group Tells Young People: Know Your Rights!

A Lebanese non-profit organisation has launched a campaign to empower young people who are being criminalised for drug use, and to call on legislators to adopt an alternative drug policy approach.

Skoun, the organisation behind the initiative, is a Beirut-based organisation that offers free and confidential drug treatment to those who seek it. Alongside its clinical work, Skoun campaigns for an end to Lebanon’s punitive drug policies, and advocates for policies rooted in humanity, self-determination, health, and justice.

The organisation launched its Know Your Rights campaign in September. The project has three goals: empowering young people to know their rights during drug-related encounters with the law; shedding light on police abuse of power; and, stimulating debate around the effectiveness of current drug policies.

No place to fall sick: How refugees are barred from healthcare

Administrative and legal barriers, together with prohibitive costs, mean those fleeing conflict and persecution are often left without the most basic rights to healthcare.

At this week’s UN summit, heads of state promised to share responsibility for the 65 million people displaced worldwide. The six wealthiest countries host less than nine per cent of the world’s refugees while poorer countries bear the brunt of the crisis.

Lebanon has the highest number of refugees compared to its population, with over a million Syrians living there.