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Germany pledges continued support

  • German Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen stands in front of a UNIFIL vessel during her visit to Germany's naval UNIFIL at the port of Beirut, Thursday, April 24, 2014. (The Daily Star/Mohammad Azakir)

BEIRUT: German’s Defense Minister, Ursula von der Leyen, met with Lebanese officials Thursday, renewing her country’s commitment to Lebanon’s stability.

“The main purpose of the meeting was to show the continued support of Germany for UNIFIL, where it has played a role since 2006,” Sebastian Damm, the embassy’s first secretary, told The Daily Star.

Von der Leyen, who visited Beirut Port and the naval base in Jounieh in the afternoon, met with President Michel Sleiman in Baabda. The two discussed Germany’s participation in the United Nations Interim Force in Lebanon as well as assistance to the Lebanese Army via the International Support Group for Lebanon, Sleiman’s office said.

They discussed the situation in the region, particularly the Syrian conflict, and means to help Lebanon address the refugee crisis.

Von der Leyen also met with Prime Minister Tammam Salam.

“It was a constructive meeting and important. I was moved by the prime minister’s personality and the way he told us about the formation of a government that is stable and unifying,” Von der Leyen said after the meeting.

 
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on April 25, 2014, on page 3.
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