Lebanon today : Friday April 5th Top news

Here are the top stories for Lebanon today:

Lebanese judge Marwan Abboud, who heads a body empowered to fire civil servants SAYS saying half of the public sector employees should be fired on charges of corruption
Lebanese judge Marwan Abboud, who heads a body empowered to fire civil servants SAYS  half of the public sector employees should be fired on charges of corruption

Lebanese ministers focused on international trips over reform

Despite promises to implement rapid reforms, the Lebanese government formed in January after nearly nine months of difficult negotiations has accomplished little so far, a local think tank said this week. The country is under intense pressure to reform its economy and tackle corruption in order to avoid a looming economic crisis and take advantage of billions of dollars in proffered international loans. “After nine months, the government does not have the luxury of time,” said French diplomat Pierre Duquesne speaking about the implementation of the conference, dubbed CEDRE, at a press conference in Beirut last month. Changes must happen “before the summer”, he said, adding that if they don’t, interest in Lebanon will “slowly erode”.

Hezbollah Venezuela flag
Hezbollah Venezuela flag

Venezuelan foreign minister denies his country harbors Hezbollah cells

Venezuelan Foreign Minister Jorge Arreaza, who is visiting Lebanon, denies US claims that his country harbours Hezbollah cells.“He said that the US sometimes accuses Venezuela of having Hezbollah cells but that’s not true,” Lebanese MP Yassine Jaber , of Amal Movement , a key ally of Hezbollah said after meeting Mr Arreaza on Wednesday. Jaber , met Arreaza on behalf of  Speaker Nabih Berri who is currently in Iraq

Lebanon receives 6 Scan Eagle drone systems from US
Lebanon receives 6 Scan Eagle drone systems from US

Lebanon army receives $11m in US military aidFirst

Lebanon’s army  announced  yesterday that it had received six drones worth $11 million from the United States (US). The shipment was part of a US military assistance package that was agreed last year. Since 2005, the US has supplied the Lebanese military with more than $2.3 billion in assistance, aiming to support it as “the sole, legitimate defender” of a country where the heavily armed, Iran-backed Hezbollah holds major sway.

“Mahbas” will be showing Saturday at at 5 p.m. (Photo: Courtesy of the Lebanese Consulate)
“Mahbas” will be showing Saturday at at 5 p.m. (Photo: Courtesy of the Lebanese Consulate)

Lebanese Film Festival to premier  in Dearborn Michigan

File photo: Russian President Vladimir Putin (L) welcomes Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during a meeting at the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia June 7, 2016. REUTERS/Maxim Shipenkov/Pool - RTSGEFC
File photo: Russian President Vladimir Putin (L) welcomes Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu during a meeting at the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia June 7, 2016. REUTERS/Maxim Shipenkov/Pool – RTSGEFC

The first-of-its-kind Lebanese Film Festival will be held Saturday in Dearborn with screenings of three films produced, directed and shot by Lebanese filmmakers in Lebanon.

“Lebanon is known around the world for its rich culture and diversity,” said Consul General Suzan Mouzi-Yassine. “With the large population of Lebanese Americans in metro Detroit, the film festival is also an important opportunity to open dialogue about social issues presented in the three films.”

Russia helped Israel recover remains of soldier missing since 1982

Russia’s military helped Israel recover from Syria the remains of an Israeli soldier missing since the 1982 war in Lebanon, President Vladimir Putin says. The body of US-born tank commander Sergeant First Class Zachary Baumel was flown back to Israel a few days ago. He was reportedly  killed in Lebanon in the Battle of Sultan Yacoub   and buried by the Syrians  in Damascus