NNA - Prime Minister Hassan Diab visited Saturday the Mufti of the Lebanese Republic, Sheikh Abdel-Latif Derian, at Dar Al-Fatwa, accompanied by the Minister of Interior and Municipalities, Mohammad Fahmi and PM Advisor, Khodor Taleb.
After the meeting, PM Diab said: "The visit of His Eminence the Mufti and Dar Al Fatwa has a special essence. Talks with Mufti Derian focused on the prevailing social, economic and daily-living conditions. We rely on his Eminence's wisdom and expertise in dealing with such issues."
He added: "The government is undoubtedly working vigorously to ease the burdens on citizens and is providing assistance to underprivileged families; 140 000 families are currently benefitting from our assistance, and we hope to reach 200 000 families, which is equivalent to more than 1.5 million Lebanese citizens. We are also providing assistance to industrial and agricultural sectors, in addition to small and medium-sized enterprises, out of the 1200 million Lebanese pounds allocated for assistance."
"We have recently submitted a bill to the Parliament to disburse 500 billion Lebanese pounds to help schools overcome the difficult economic situation for the next academic year, in addition to other projects aimed at supporting the social situation, especially the food basket comprised of around 300 basic food commodities, covering more than 80 to 90% of citizen's daily needs, thus separating the cost of these goods from the dollar's exchange rate fluctuation," disclosed Diab.
"We are always acting under the auspices of Dar Al Fatwa and we thank His Eminence for all his suggestions and directives," he asserted.
Speaking to reporters after the meeting, PM Diab answered the following questions:
Q- You have held a lengthy meeting with U.S. Ambassador yesterday; did this meeting yield positive results?
A- We discussed several topics, and HE the Ambassador expressed full willingness to help Lebanon with various fields.
Q- Is Lebanon still under control?
A- Lebanon will not be under anyone's control as long as I am in this position.
Q- AUB president said yesterday that your government was the worst government. What do you have to say?
A- This reflects his personal opinion, and I will not respond to this issue.
Q- How do you reassure citizens regarding the dollar and the daily living and political conditions?
A- Undoubtedly, several factors play a role in all this, including negotiations taking place with the International Monetary Fund; thank God, we turned the page on the discussions that took place over the past six weeks; from this perspective, we started talking about basic required reforms and the program that must be agreed upon between the IMF and Lebanon; this will play a key role in restoring confidence and opens doors for many projects including Cedre and other funds.
Q- How true is the information circulating about the Cabinet's or some ministers' resignation?
A- This is included under daily fabricated and fake news. [PM Diab's Press Office]