ISG urges govt. that can implement 'extremely important outstanding reforms'

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The International Support Group for Lebanon (ISG) on Friday welcomed the timely conduct of the parliamentary elections in Lebanon on May 15, expressing its appreciation for “the professionalism, hard work and dedication of the Lebanese civil servants involved in the electoral process” and commending the security forces for “maintaining public order during its conduct.”

“The ISG is encouraged by the Lebanese people’s civic participation in these elections in Lebanon and abroad, which was an opportunity for them to articulate their aspirations and to have their voices heard; they deserve that,” the ISG said in a statement.

The ISG also said that it looks forward to the inauguration of the new parliament, urging it to capitalize on “the hope and faith the people have invested in it at the ballot box.”

“Now is the time to move boldly forward to pass the legislation needed to stabilize the economy, improve governance, and enact the reforms Lebanon and its people so urgently need to help them get back on their feet,” the Group added.

The ISG also called on all relevant actors to “work quickly on the swift formation of a government that can implement the extremely important outstanding reforms and continue to work with the International Monetary Fund (IMF), including by implementing the prior actions Lebanon committed to in its 7 April staff-level agreement in order to lay a solid basis for socio-economic relief and a sustainable recovery of Lebanon.”

Moreover, the ISG noted that the number of women represented in Lebanese political life “remains low,” depriving the country of “their contribution to good governance, peace and security.”

“At the same time, given the enthusiastic participation of women in this election, the ISG urges every possible step to ensure that women play a full part in Lebanese politics,” it added.

The ISG also said that it looks forward to working with the new government as it “follows up on its international commitments, including under U.N. Security Council resolution 1701 (2006) and other relevant resolutions,” while reiterating its support for “Lebanon’s sovereignty, stability and political independence.”

“Going forward, it is important to adhere to the constitutional calendar for the next steps in the electoral cycle through this year. The International Support Group continues to stand by Lebanon and its people,” the ISG added.

The International Support Group comprises the United Nations and the governments of China, France, Germany, Italy, the Russian Federation, the United Kingdom and the United States, together with the European Union and the Arab League. It was launched in September 2013 by the U.N. Secretary-General with former President Michel Suleiman to “help mobilize support and assistance for Lebanon’s stability, sovereignty and state institutions.”

SourceNaharnet