20 Jan. (EUROPA PRESS) –
The Lebanese Ministry of Foreign Affairs has affirmed this Friday that the payment of the arrears of United Nations quotas has begun after the UN Secretary General, António Guterres, warned that the country, together with Venezuela or South Sudan, he had lost the right to vote for his lack of financial contribution.
“After contacts with the Government and the Ministry of Finance, it turned out that the payment will be made immediately, which will make it possible to preserve the rights of Lebanon in the United Nations,” the Ministry stressed, as reported by ‘L’Orient le Jour’ .
In total, Lebanon owes more than 1.8 million dollars, although Venezuela’s debt is higher, with more than 76.2 million if it wants to restore its voting rights. Likewise, countries such as Equatorial Guinea, South Sudan, Gabon and the Dominican Republic also owe arrears.
Under Article 19 of the UN Charter, a Member State that accumulates debts in an amount that equals or exceeds the contributions of the previous two years may lose its vote in the General Assembly.
Despite this, the organization, with 193 member countries, has the right to decide whether or not non-payment is due to conditions beyond the control of said State. If so, the country can continue to vote in the UN General Assembly.
Lebanon has been trapped for several years in a deep and prolonged political, economic and social crisis that has caused more than 70 percent of the population to live below the poverty line and have a banking system paralyzed since October 2019.