That’s a pretty cool penthouse that the majority of Lebanese probably will never be able to buy. Check out more awesome pictures [Here].
This spacious penthouse in Beirut is owned by 45-year-old Lebanese architect Bernard Khoury. He chose a home with its hodgepodge city view over the more sought-after romantic sea view. It happened by circumstance, when his friend, Marc Doumit, a developer, bought the land on Damascus Road at a low price in the late 1990s after it had been sitting deserted for nearly a decade following the end of the 15-year civil war. Mr. Khoury’s family moved in last year. [WallStreetJournal]
PS: All pictures are taken by Roger Moukarzel for The Wall Street Journal
Note: The app is almost a year old but I only heard about it after reading some article about 600 speed tickets issued yesterday (I thought they stopped doing so)
There’s an app available for Android and iOS now to check speeding tickets in Lebanon. Speed Ticket Lebanon basically retrieves the data from the ISF website. To be honest, I thought radars stopped working in Lebanon months ago.
You can download it for [Android] and [iOS].
The Lebanese Ministry Of Public Health launched today a mobile app for Android and iOS devices, aimed at facilitating the cooperation with other ministries, the private sector and civil society. I downloaded it and thought it was a very useful app.
Once you install and open the app, you get a welcoming page with sliding banners on top, a small news updates tab in the middle then the different menu items. Here’s what you can do with this app:
– Check out the official price of a medicine from a long detailed list. [Drugs Price List]
– Determine if your medicine is legal by checking the [Distributed Drugs] list.
– Check out the various MOPH campaigns and other media in the [Gallery].
– Report fraudulent action to the ministry in the [Be Responsible] section. You can also attach pictures.
– [Locate Public or Private Hospitals] nearby from a long detailed list sorted by area.
– Access the numerous services and campaigns of Ministry of Health under the [MOPH Directory].
– You can also call directly the MOPH on their hotline 1214.
There’s one option that I believe should be added, one that allows users to follow up on their complaints and see if any actions were taken. That will make Lebanese trust the ministry more and cooperate in a better way.
Picture from Nath Halawani
Hundreds of Lebanese joined the protest yesterday to condemn the torching of Al Sa’eh library in Tripoli, Lebanon’s second biggest library. Lebanese of all ages and religions came to help Father Sarrouj save whatever is left of the 80,000 books and clean up the library. The renovation process will take days and maybe weeks but everyone’s determined to bring back the library to its original state and make it look even better than before.
Lebanese Blogger Nath Halawani has taken part in the restoration process and is sharing awesome pictures that you can check [Here].
I have to say that despite the book slaughter that took place a couple of days ago, I am happy to see all Tripoli residents united and determined to bring back this library to life.
Here’s a nice report by MTV as well:
It seems the Americans know something we don’t know as I don’t recall ever reading a warning this specific from an embassy in Lebanon. Let’s hope they are just being extra cautious and those are all speculations.
If you’re wondering what could the worst-case scenario for Lebanon be this year, I suggest you read QifaNabki’s Levantine Dystopia.
Following recent bombings in Beirut and other instances of violence that have occurred in Lebanon in recent months, the U.S. government strongly urges U.S. citizens in Lebanon to exercise extreme caution and to avoid hotels, western-style shopping centers, including western-style grocery chain stores, and any public or social events where U.S. citizens normally congregate, as these sites are likely targets for terrorist attacks for at least the near term.
The U.S. Embassy further urges all U.S. citizens to avoid all travel to Lebanon due to safety and security concerns. The current travel warning can be seen at this link: Travel Warning for Lebanon. U.S. citizens living and working in Lebanon should understand that they accept risks in remaining and should carefully consider those risks. The ability of U.S. government personnel to reach travelers to provide emergency services may be limited.
We strongly recommend that U.S. citizens traveling to or residing in Lebanon enroll in the Department of State’s Smart Traveler Enrollment Program (STEP). STEP enrollment gives you the latest security updates, and makes it easier for the U.S. embassy or nearest U.S. consulate to contact you in an emergency. If you don’t have Internet access, enroll directly with the nearest U.S. embassy or consulate.
Regularly monitor the State Department’s website, Travel.State.Gov, where you can find current Travel Warnings, including the Travel Warning for Lebanon, Travel Alerts, and the Worldwide Caution. You can also read the Country Specific Information for Lebanon from within this website. For additional information, refer to “A Safe Trip Abroad” on the State Department’s website.
Contact the U.S. Embassy for up-to-date information on travel restrictions. You can also call 1-888-407-4747 toll-free from within the United States and Canada, or 1-202-501-4444 from other countries. These numbers are available from 8:00 a.m. to 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time, Monday through Friday (except U.S. federal holidays). Follow us onTwitter and Facebook, and download our free Smart Traveler App available through iTunes and Google Play to have travel information at your fingertips.
The U.S. Embassy in Beirut Lebanon is located at Awkar facing the Municipality, PO Box 70-840, Beirut and is open Monday through Friday, 8 AM to 4:30 PM, (961) (4) 542600 or (961) (4) 543600. If you are a U.S. citizen in need of urgent assistance, the emergency number for the U.S. Embassy is (961) (4) 542600 or (961) (4) 543600. For further information, U.S. citizens may also access our website at Embassy in Lebanon. [Source]
I urge everyone to listen carefully to the last part and do what the Lebanese Army tells you to do when a bomb goes off.
Picture via Natheer Halawani
A lot of people haven’t unfortunately heard about this decades-old library in Tripoli up until it got torched today, so I did some research and pulled out old pictures and information about the library and its owner Greek Orthodox Priest Ibrahim Sarrouj.
Al Sa’eh Library was founded in 1970 by the Orthodox Youth movement and consisted of a single room. Few years later, the library published around 10 books. In the early 1980s, they gradually started releasing Orthodox publications. In 1983, Samir Makhoul, Toni Boulos, Ibrahim Sarrouj decided to expand the library and bought the warehouse next to it.
Nowadays, the library has over 80,000 books (not copies), out of which 400 rare books. One of the oldest book in this library according to Father Sarrouj is one that dates back to 1817 written by an American Colonel and is estimated at around $3,000. Speaking of Father Sarrouh who’s a highly esteemed and respected individual in Tripoli, he has shown great interest in Islamic Studies despite being a Greek Orthodox.
The loss of this library is a huge one for Tripoli and Lebanon as a whole. I wish officials would have taken the necessary precautions to preserve it and protect it from the assholes who burned it down.
Sources Used for Pictures and Information:
Father Ibrahim Sarrouj
What sort of people would burn a library these days? This is a shameful and alarming act to be honest. Al-Saeh Library had more than 70,000 books.
Unknown assailants on Friday set fire to a famous library owned by Father Ibrahim Sarrouj in the northern city of Tripoli. “Firemen are trying to extinguish the blaze that erupted in Father Ibrahim Sarrouj’s library in Tripoli’s al-Rahbat street,” LBCI television reported.
The torching of the al-Saeh Library comes after reports that claimed the father had published a book deemed insulting to Islam. Bashir Hazzouri, an employee at the library, was shot and wounded on Thursday in the old souks of Tripoli. Al-Saeh Library is considered one of the most renowned libraries in Tripoli and the second largest in Lebanon.
Sarrouj says the library contains more than 70,000 books. [Link]
PayPal launched in Egypt last year and Lebanon was supposedly next on the list. However, and as per their reply to Jad from the JRExpress, “there are no reasons per se why PayPal is not launching Lebanon, it’s just a matter of priorities”.
My name is Laurent Wakim and I am in charge of PayPal’s business in the MENA region.
As my colleague explained to you, when we announced the launch of PayPal services in Egypt in May, there was a misinterpretation about Lebanon’s launch. In 2012, PayPal decided to have a dedicated team focusing on the MENA region. As part of the priorities, expanding our geographic footprint is among the most important ones. That’s why we launched our business in Egypt.
Lebanon is an important market to us (and to me being Lebanese) however when PayPal looks at new opportunities, we need to prioritize them and they compete against other initiatives whether new products, new geographies, …etc. So while enabling Lebanon remains a priority for us, we don’t have any timeline that we can share. There are no reasons per se why PayPal is not launching Lebanon, it is a matter of priorities.
My best regards.