Situation in Lebanon

Press Statement
Patrick Ventrell
Acting Deputy Spokesperson
Washington, DC
May 24, 2013

The United States is deeply concerned about the situation in Lebanon. The latest clashes in the northern city of Tripoli, in which at least 23 people have been killed, constitute a stark reminder that the conflict in Syria poses an increasingly dangerous threat to Lebanon’s stability and security.

The United States fully supports Lebanon’s security, stability, and sovereignty and welcomes efforts by Lebanon’s leaders to take all necessary steps to put an end to the violence in Tripoli. We strongly support the Lebanese Armed Forces’ and Internal Security Forces’ efforts to stop the fighting in Tripoli and fully restore calm across the country. We call on all parties to do their part to restore calm, act with restraint, and respect Lebanon’s stability and security.

The United States supports the principles of the 2012 Baabda Declaration and Lebanon’s dissociation policy with respect to the crisis in Syria. We call on all parties in the region to avoid any actions that would exacerbate that crisis, increase the propensity for spillover violence, and negatively affect civilian populations. Hizballah leaders’ decision to escalate the group’s role in the fighting in Syria violates and undermines Lebanon’s dissociation policy and risks dragging Lebanon into a foreign conflict, to the detriment of the interests of the Lebanese people.

PRN: 2013/0638