WATCH: President Trump Holds Press Conference With Lebanon Prime Minister LIVE STREAM
President Donald Trump will hold a joint press conference with Lebanese Prime Minister Saad Hariri Tuesday to talk about Trump’s projected cuts to aiding Lebanon and the fight against terrorism. The press conference is expected to start at 3 p.m. Eastern.
Watch live above.
This is the first time Trump and Hariri will meet in person, and according to a statement from the White House, the meeting is to strengthen the two countries relationship and discuss shared issues.
“The two leaders will discuss issues of mutual concern, including the fight against terrorism, the economy, and refugees. This meeting will serve as an important opportunity to strengthen the bilateral relationship and will encourage other international and regional partners to support Lebanon as it faces a wide range of challenges.”
According to the State Department’s 2018 Budget Plan, the U.S. expects to cut 82% of the budget currently going towards aiding Lebanon. The U.S. provided $103 million in military aid to Lebanon last year, but the 2018 budget plans to cut it to $19 million. The Lebanese Army is important because of its proximity to ISIS groups in the mountains of Arsal. Their army is able to confront ISIS because of support from foreign countries.
Hariri has had a roller coaster of a time as Prime Minister. He was appointed PM in November 2009, but stepped down in 2011 when the government collapsed. During this time, there was a deadlock for the presidency, assassinations of leaders, and Syria issued an arrest warrant for Hariri. After a president finally took office, Hariri was made Prime Minister again in December 2016.
[image via sceengrab]
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