UN chief will work with new Lebanon government on reforms

Guterres’ said the United Nations was committed to supporting “Lebanon’s strengthening of its sovereignty, stability and political independence.” (File/AFP)
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Updated 22 January 2020

UN chief will work with new Lebanon government on reforms

  • Guterres’ spokesperson said the United Nations was committed to supporting “Lebanon’s strengthening of its sovereignty, stability and political independence”
  • Lebanon formed a new government under Prime Minister Hassan Diab

BEIRUT: UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres welcomed the formation of a new Lebanese government on Tuesday and will work with the new premier to support reforms in the heavily indebted country grappling with an urgent economic crisis.
A statement issued by Guterres’ spokesperson also said the United Nations was committed to supporting “Lebanon’s strengthening of its sovereignty, stability and political independence.”
Lebanon formed a new government under Prime Minister Hassan Diab after the Shiite Hezbollah movement and its allies agreed on a cabinet after weeks of wrangling over portfolios.


In Lebanon, dogs are being poisoned over bogus coronavirus reports

Updated 1 min 19 sec ago

In Lebanon, dogs are being poisoned over bogus coronavirus reports

DUBAI: Horrific videos and images of dogs agonizingly foaming in the mouth after being poisoned have circulated social media after a Lebanese TV station falsely reported that cats and dogs could transmit the deadly coronavirus.

The report, published on Saturday, has been since taken off social media after animal activists and experts dismissed the claims as bogus. The preceding panic however resulted in owners abandoning their pets or other residents poisoning dogs and cats for fear of contracting the virus.

However, not all poisonings had sad endings as pictures sent exclusively to Arab News showed Bruce, an Asian Shepherd, recovering from the ordeal after being poisoned in Byblos.

The owner took immediate actions when he suspected signs of poisoning, and took his dog to the veterinarian clinic for immediate treatment. With the veterinarian assistance, the valued pet dog is now recovering at home, its owner said.

“Here in Bsalim, due to the ignorance of some people who ignored the recommendations of the World Health Organization, one of them put poisoned meat on a street to kill pet dogs (friends of man). Watch Odin wrestle with death and his condition critical. You are criminals, criminals,” Joe Maalouf, a Lebanese TV presenter and animal rights activist, commented in a video he posted on Twitter showing animal doctors trying to revive Odin, a German Shepherd, that was poisoned with food picked up from the side of the road.

A separate tweet from Maalouf likewise showed images of poisoned meat in the patios and gardens of Bsalim, a village in the Matn district of Mount Lebanon governorate.

 

“More poisoned meat was found today in Bsalim, in patios and gardens in people’s homes to kill pets !! Who is responsible for this crime? The municipality has moved, and tomorrow we will review the competent court to open an investigation and review the cameras as soon as possible,” Maalouf said.

Lebanese biologist Gino Raidy also earlier posted on Twitter images of apparent rat poison baited for dogs, as he called out the TV station who earlier made the claim that cats and dogs transmit the coronavirus.

“After reports on MTV falsely claimed that pets carry the novel coronavirus (not true) which MTV retracted without an apology or clarification (as usual), many evil people are trying to poison our pets. These photos are from Sursock in Beirut today!,” Raidy commented on Twitter.

Lebanese health officials on Tuesday reported 17 new coronavirus cases, bringing the total to 463, while the number of deaths has risen to 12.