BEIRUT: A U.S. Embassy official Wednesday unveiled a new vehicle maintenance facility in Aramoun for the Internal Security Forces, saying the project was part of America’s ongoing commitment to strengthening Lebanese institutions and security.
Speaking at the ribbon cutting ceremony, Deputy Chief of Mission Richard M. Mills said the facility would help the ISF take care of the range of vehicles previously donated to the security agency by the U.S. government. These include 450 Dodge Chargers, 60 Ford Explorers, 25 Harley Davidson motorcycles and several SUVs.
“This facility provides modern techniques for repairing these vehicles, keeping them on the road longer and allowing the ISF to more effectively deliver law-enforcement services to the Lebanese public,” Mills said, according to a U.S. Embassy press release.
The $800,000 project is just one of a range of initiatives being realized as part of a wider collaboration between the U.S. and the ISF, which has seen the embassy provide more than $100 million in funding for training and equipment since 2008.
The Aramoun Training Academy, where the vehicle maintenance center is based, is a key part of this assistance. The $9.7 million center also includes a tactical training village, a forensics investigative laboratory, classrooms and a shooting range.
“Our commitment to the ISF as a pillar of public security in Lebanon is clear today and has been demonstrated over the last several years,” Mills said.
“Our partnership with the ISF is part of the United States’ long-standing commitment to work with the Lebanese people and the institutions of the state, especially those in the security sector, to build a more stable, prosperous Lebanon.”
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on February 06, 2014, on page 4.