UN Special Coordinator Sigrid Kaag visits Tripoli in north Lebanon (Transcript of Remarks

3 Feb 2015

UN Special Coordinator Sigrid Kaag visits Tripoli in north Lebanon (Transcript of Remarks

Tripoli, Lebanon

Tuesday, 03 February 2015
I came to Tripoli as one of my first visits
outside Beirut.

As you know I started two and half weeks ago. So I am very much here to listen, to learn but also to see with my own eyes and speak with the Governor, the Mayor of the Municipality, the Mufti of Tripoli, the parliamentarians and many other partners, our UN team, how they work, what the challenges are and what we can do more.

There are three clear messages and they will not be new to you: 1-One of them is that peace and security and stability in Lebanon and also in Tripoli is very important. We need to do everything and I know in particularly the Lebanese Armed Forces and other security services are dealing very effectively and quickly with all security threats from terrorists and other groups. 2-Secondly of course is that the social economic dimensions of underdevelopment and deprivation, poverty in particular, have been longstanding. So a lot more focus will be needed to assist our Lebanese partners to deal with this. 3- The third issue of course is the impact of the Syrian crises and the presence of Syrians in vulnerable Lebanese hosts communities calls of course for continued action. The UN team has been working here from day one. They work with partners to make sure both the needs of Lebanese vulnerable communities are met as well as those of the Syrian displaced refugee population.

The question of course before us is: will the needs be enough? Will there be sustained attention? But the issue comes also back to the importance of Lebanon’s stability as well as stabilization. It was extremely helpful to meet and speak with everybody. I hope to go back very soon. You may recall after the terrorist incident in Jabal Mohsen of 10th of January. The Security Council also issued a very clear and strong statement not only condemning the act but also calling for restraint and equally reminding all of the importance of the Baabda Declaration. So there is a lot to look at , a lot to learn but also a lot to achieve together and the United Nations in all its facets is here to work for Lebanon, for the people of Lebanon, in close cooperation with the Government, the Governors , the Municipalities and with all the Lebanese partners.

Thank you