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US Readies Aid Deal To Help Lebanon Counter Hezbollah December 22, 2006

Posted by notapundit in US News, World News.

NEW YORK (Dow Jones)–The United States is preparing a package of almost $500 million in aid for Lebanon’s military and police to help strengthen security forces, part of almost $1 billion in total U.S. assistance to help the Lebanese government, according to U.S. officials, the Washington Post reports in its Friday edition.

The package is part of an effort by the U.S., France, Saudi Arabia, the United Arab Emirates and others to shore up the Lebanese security forces so they can eventually extend their control over the entire country for the first time since civil war erupted there in 1975, the Post reports. It is also designed to strengthen the government’s hand over the influence of Hezbollah, Lebanon’s last militia and a force often better-equipped than the country’s army, the sources said, according to the Post.

Although U.S. officials say the final details have to be worked out, the aid package is likely to be divided about evenly among training, spare parts and ammunition, the Post reports. The leadership training will probably be done by contract workers rather than by the U.S. military.


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