Syria says it welcomes Lebanon’s request to import energy

Syria says it welcomes Lebanon’s request to import energy

Syria said on Saturday it welcomed Lebanon’s request to import Egyptian gas for power generation through its territory after Lebanese ministers made the highest-level visit to Damascus for years.
Lebanon suffers from energy shortages that have forced even essential services, including hospitals, to close or scale back their operations. The crisis is the result of a wider financial collapse that has devastated the economy since 2019.

The delegation, led by Zeina Akkar, who holds several positions in the Lebanese interim government, including the foreign minister, aimed to pave the way for a U.S.-backed plan to alleviate power shortages in Lebanon by delivering electricity through the Syrian grid.

“The Syrian side welcomed the request and assured that it was ready to respond,” Nasri Khoury, secretary general of the Lebanese Syrian Supreme Council, said in a brief statement after the meeting.

The plan is to use Egyptian gas to generate electricity in Jordan which will then be transported via Syria to Lebanon.

US sanctions against Damascus complicate any effort to help Lebanon via Syria, but members of Congress visiting Beirut this week said Washington is looking for ways to overcome these obstacles as a matter of urgency.

U.S. Ambassador to Lebanon Dorothy Shea also said there was a will to make the plan a reality.
Syrian Foreign Minister Faisal Mekdad received the Lebanese delegation at the border on Saturday, which also included the ministers of energy and finance.

Lebanese government officials had mostly avoided Syria since the war began in 2011, with Beirut adopting a policy of staying away from regional conflicts, even as Shiite group Hezbollah fought to support Damascus.


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