On Monday 10 August 2020, at the international conference on assistance and support to Beirut and the Lebanese people, the European Commission has pledged a new funding worth €30 million to help address the immediate needs of those affected by the deadly explosion in Beirut on 4 August: this comes on top of the €33 million already announced by President von der Leyen in her phone call on Thursday with the Lebanese President.
Representing the European Commission at the conference today, Commissioner for Crisis Management Janez Lenarčič said: “The EU has been helping Lebanon since immediately after the explosion, mobilising hundreds of search and rescue experts and sending medical aid to Beirut. I thank all European countries that have put solidarity into action. As needs rise we are providing humanitarian support to hundreds of thousands of the most vulnerable people. In these critical hours, the EU is providing shelter, emergency healthcare, water and sanitation, and food assistance. We are committed to stand by the people of Lebanon today and in the long term to help them recover.”
The new EU humanitarian funding will be channelled to UN agencies, NGOs and international organisations and be strictly monitored. This assistance will benefit hundreds of thousands of the most affected people to cover essential needs.
The EU is a leading supporter of Lebanon, providing over €2.3 billion of assistance since 2011, including over €660 million in humanitarian aid.
EU emergency response in Beirut, Lebanon
Today's funding comes on top of ongoing EU emergency operations, which include:
• Some 300 highly trained experts from the EU and its Member States were deployed through the EU Civil Protection Mechanism, including search and rescue, chemical assessment and medical teams;
• in-kind assistance consisting of urgently medical equipment and supplies, chemical protection suits;
• a military vessel with helicopter capacity for medical evacuation, and medical and protective equipment;
• the activation of the Copernicus Satellite mapping system to help assess the extent of the damage.
The new EU support announced today follows the letter of the President of the European Council Michel and President of the Commission von der Leyen to EU Member States where they encouraged them to intensify support to Lebanon, in short term emergency and humanitarian aid but also in the longer-term reconstruction of the country. The EU institutions stand ready to ensure the synergy of the aid that the EU and Member States are going to provide through a coordination mechanism that the EU institutions will put in place.