Email your presidential candidates . Member of parliament Boutros Harb said he would run in Lebanon's presidential elections planned for October. You can contact him using E-mail : BoutrosHarb@Lebanon.com or read about his Personal Biography and Political Life
Israeli shelling of the village of Mashghara in the Western Bekaa Valley this morning injured a civilian woman, Fatima Hijazi. Nine civilian homes were also damaged in the village. Bombardment launched from neighboring Israeli outposts also targeted the area of Ain Al-Teeneh.
For its part, the Lebanese resistance carried out an attack against an Israeli position in Toumat Neeha scoring direct hits in the outpost and among its soldiers. The resistance also announced it attacked a number of Israeli allied militia positions in different areas in the South. Late this afternoon, an Israeli soldier was wounded during a resistance attack on his patrol in the occupied zone.
The five-nation cease-fire monitoring group late yesterday concluded its session, which was held at the UNIFIL's headquarters in Naqoura over eight complaints, four filed by Lebanon and four others by Israel. The committee denounced the recent upsurge of violence in the region. The panel also accused Israel and the Lebanese Resistance of violating the April understanding by targeting civilian areas. The group said Israel violated the accord by shelling civilian areas and injuring six Lebanese including a child in Mashghara. On the other hand, the monitoring group considered Katyusha rocket attacks on Northern Israel last week as a violation of the accord. The group reiterated its call on both sides to avoid civilians and civilian areas when fighting in the South.
President Elias Al-Hrawi today received Bahrain's Trade Minister, Ali Al-Saleh at the presidential palace in Baabda. Talks centered on bilateral trade ties between Lebanon and Bahrain. The meeting was attended by Lebanese Minister of Economy and Trade Yassin Jaber. Al-Saleh later held talks with Prime Minister Rafik Al-Hariri on bilateral economic issues.
Later this evening, the Bahraini Minister opened his country's Trade Fair at the Forum Du Beyrouth. Around 55 companies from different Gulf countries are participating in the event.
At the Grand Saray today, Prime Minister Rafik Al-Hariri held a joint meeting with the Minister of Water Resources and Electricity, Elie Hobeika and Acting Finance Minister of State, Fouad Sanyoura. Discussions centered on ways to organize financial dealings between the Electricity Company and the Ministry of Finance. Hobeika later downplayed the possibility of increasing the price of electric power. He added power cuts in a number of Lebanese areas are due to the incapability of generators to endure excessive electricity consumption.
Romanian Prime Minister, Radu Vasile, will return this evening to his country after a two-day official visit to Lebanon. Vasile, accompanied by his telecommunications minister and the Romanian Central Bank Governor, today discussed Lebanese-Romanian trade ties at the Chamber of Trade and Industry in Beirut. Vasile described his talks with Lebanese officials as very important in strengthening bilateral relations between the two countries. During their visit to the country, the Romanian Premier and his accompanying delegation studied along with the Lebanese side business and investment opportunities in both countries.
Following a two-day meeting in Durban, South Africa, countries belonging to the Non-aligned Movement late yesterday issued a draft communiqué saying Israel should unconditionally implement UN Security Council Resolution 425.
For his part Lebanese Foreign Minister Faris Boueiz, who attended the meetings, welcomed the decision, which also voices support for Lebanon's rejection of the recent Israeli offer on 425. The proposal asks the Lebanese government for security guarantees of its northern border in return for Israeli pullout. The draft communiqué will be deliberated during the next two days.
The newly appointed US ambassador to Lebanon, David Satterfield, today said his country supports the constitutional process in Lebanon including the presidential elections that will be held this Fall. In an interview published today in the An-Nahar daily, the US ambassador noted the Lebanese people want a president who possesses a strong sense of nationalism and credibility. He also expressed his country's deep concern regarding the situation in South Lebanon. He stressed the importance of reaching a way to put an end to violence in the region. Satterfield added any progress in the Mideast peace process would reflect positively on the situation in South Lebanon.
Local phone call bills are to increase by 75% starting today. The cost will thus increase from LL20 to LL35 per minute. But calls between different zones in the country will now be charged the same. The director general of the Ministry of Post and Tele Communications announced the decision saying it was mainly aimed at encouraging Internet usage by residents of areas outside the capital. The costs of logging in will thus be charged the same in all Lebanese areas. Youssef also announced the cost of installing a new telephone line will be reduced from LL400, 000 to LL200, 000.
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