Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Rubio Begins Middle East Visit

MAR 18 2017
Washington, D.C. - U.S. Senator Marco Rubio (R-FL), a member of the Senate's Select Committee on Intelligence, is in the Middle East this weekend on an official visit conducting oversight of U.S. programs abroad.

On his official Facebook page this morning, Rubio issued the following statement:

"This weekend, I am in the Middle East on an official visit conducting oversight of U.S. programs abroad as a member of the Senate's Select Committee on Intelligence. I just concluded my visit to Beirut, Lebanon, where I met with Prime Minister Saad Al-Hariri and government officials to discuss regional security.

"I stressed to our Lebanese partners the importance of cracking down on the terrorist group Hezbollah. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH) and I were sponsors of the Hezbollah International Financing Prevention Act, which was signed into law in 2015. This law blocks the terrorist organization's financing and limits its access to logistical support. Prime Minister Al-Hariri and I discussed ways to address Hezbollah's threat to regional stability, and the necessity of helping to build the capability of the Lebanese Armed Forces to confront terrorist threats.

"As always, I continue to be impressed by the work of Americans who serve abroad in our Beirut embassy and throughout the world as members of the Foreign Service. It is critical that we support their work in advancing our interests, as well as the goals of our international assistance programs.

"I was also honored to visit the Beirut Memorial, a tribute to the 241 U.S. service personnel, including 220 Marines, who lost their lives in the 1983 Beirut barracks bombing. While I was there, I remembered those who were killed during this terrorist attack orchestrated by Hezbollah and prayed for their families. They continue to be in our thoughts and prayers."

Saturday, March 18, 2017

Senator Richard Burr Visits Lebanon

March 18, 2017
Senator Richard Burr (R-NC) led a delegation of five senators including Senators John Cornyn (R-TX), Marco Rubio (R-FL), James Lankford (R-OK), and Tom Cotton (R-AR) on a visit to Lebanon from March 17 to March 18. The delegation met with Prime Minister Saad Hariri during their visit and discussed the close relationship and security cooperation between the United States and Lebanon. The delegation's visit underscores United States support for Lebanon, the Lebanese Armed Forces, and Lebanon's institutions.

Thursday, March 09, 2017

U.S. Ambassador Delivers Equipment to the ISF

March 9, 2017

U.S. Ambassador to Lebanon Elizabeth H. Richard participated today in a ceremony to celebrate the delivery of approximately $1 million dollars' worth of equipment to the Internal Security Forces (ISF), highlighting U.S. commitment to Lebanon's state institutions.

Ambassador Richard said the U.S. is proud to deliver this much needed equipment and reiterated America's partnership with Lebanon in the fight against terrorism and extremism.

The gear and equipment delivered today is part of the U.S. State Department's Antiterrorism Assistance (ATA) program, which also included five courses of training to advance the ISF as a sophisticated, capable, and professional police force.  The equipment and training is part of long-standing U.S. support to develop Lebanon's border and internal security.

U.S. assistance to the ISF is a vital aspect of the cooperation between the two countries. The United States remains committed to strengthening the capacity of the ISF to combat terrorism, promote rule of law, ensure human rights and dignity, and maintain stability and safety.