The MOU secures an additional $500,000 for the Land Border Regiments Project, which supports Lebanese soldiers protecting Lebanon’s borders.
Reflecting the importance of sustained, international support to the Lebanese Armed Forces, British Ambassador Designate Hugo Shorter and Canadian Ambassador agrée Michelle Cameron welcomed a new partnership between the UK and Canada during a signing ceremony of a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) at the British Embassy Beirut, in the presence of Deputy Chief of Staff Brigadier General Maroun Hitti, Lt. Colonel Ashraf Kabbara, Lt. Colonel Fadel Farhat and British Defence attaché Lt. Colonel Chris Gunning .
The attendees affirmed their support to Lebanon’s stability and to the work of the LAF as they face multiple security threats.
Ambassador Shorter said:
I am very pleased to welcome Canada’s partnership in standing by Lebanon’s stability and security. The MOU secures an additional $500,000 for the Land Border Regiments Project, which supports Lebanese soldiers tasked with securing and protecting Lebanon’s borders from the Syrian overspill. This additional support - coupled with other commitments of the UK, Canada and other partners - will help ensure a safe and secure Lebanon.
Ambassador Cameron said:
Canada is pleased to join international efforts to support the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) through this partnership with the UK on the Land Border Regiments Project. Canada’s contribution includes financial and technical support for the erection of two border surveillance towers. These surveillance towers will enhance the resilience and readiness of the LAF to prevent and respond to security threats along the Lebanese border with Syria. Canada’s engagement in this project demonstrates our commitment to supporting the important and vital mission of the LAF to counter terrorist threats and to safeguard Lebanon’s stability. This support is part of Canada’s broader engagement in Lebanon and the region, which includes a commitment of $1.6 billion CDN ($1.15 billion) over the next three years to provide security, stabilization, humanitarian and development assistance in response to the crises in Iraq and Syria, and their impact on Lebanon and Jordan.
Since 2012, the UK has been delivering a £36 million (over $50m) programme to ‘train and equip’ three Land Border Regiments for the Lebanese Armed Forces, and in December 2015 announced further funding to create a fourth Land Border Regiment. These regiments observe, identify, deter and interdict activities by illegal armed actors in the border areas.