Lebanon has reportedly “missed” a valuable opportunity by not benefiting from the momentum of the French initiative “at the right time,” al-Joumhouria daily reported on Monday.

FILE PHOTO: French President Emmanuel Macron and Lebanon’s President Michel Aoun wear face masks as they arrives to attend a meeting at the presidential palace in Baabda, Lebanon September 1, 2020. REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes/Pool/File Photo

Diplomatic sources in Paris told al-Joumhouri that Lebanon “lost” the priority on the agenda of the French President Emmanuel Macron by not grasping the initiative he presented to help Lebanon steer out of its crisis.

“Macron was disappointed by the failure of Lebanon’s political forces to capture an international and regional moment favorable to obtaining the aid that the Lebanese desperately need,” said the sources

The French president reportedly has different priorities now beginning with, confronting a terrorist wave that France is witnessing recently coupled with combating a second wave of coronavirus and its economic repercussions on the French economy, according to the sources.

“France no longer has anything to offer to Lebanon” after Lebanese officials refused to take the French advice into consideration in order to get international assistance,” added the sources. 

The sources revealed that “Bernard Emie, director general of France’s external intelligence service, is becoming more concerned about the issue of combating terrorist operations, while the head of the crisis cell in the French presidency, Emmanuel Bonn, is facing internal administrative problems, which has negatively affected Lebanon”.

A French roadmap for Lebanon’s next government called for the immediate resumption of talks with the International Monetary Fund to fix the shattered economy and swift moves to fight graft and introduce other reforms that have been delayed for years.

The draft program was reviewed by Reuters last September , a day after French President Emmanuel Macron on a visit to Beirut delivered a stark message to Lebanon’s leaders: deliver on reforms by the end of October or face sanctions. 

Macron, whose pressure prompted Lebanon’s bickering leaders to agree on a new prime minister, has spearheaded international efforts to set Lebanon on a new course after decades of corrupt rule led to its deepest crisis since the 1975-1990 civil war. 

But the first PM designate Mustapha Adib failed to form a cabinet and the second PM designate Saad Hariri has been trying to form a cabinet for the past few weeks but couldn’t so far .

The corrupt Lebanese politicians according to observers have not learned anything from their past mistakes and continue to create obstacles for Hariri .

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