Category Archives: Lebanon

Lebanon To Impose Visa Restrictions On Syrians For The First Time

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refugees Picture via UNRWA

Syrians were able to stay in Lebanon for up to six months previously, but this will no longer be possible as any Syrian who wishes to enter Lebanon will have to obtain a visa at the borders. This measure should have been implemented long time ago in order to control the flow of refugees trying to escape the war but it’s better late than never.

The new regulations will come into effect on January 5 as mentioned on the General Security website. This is the first time that such measures are taken ever since Lebanon’s independence. Hopefully, the borders will be secured soon as well in order to stop illegal entries as well.

Will Solidere Really End In 2019?

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solidere

Update: Solidere’s term was actually extended to 35 years in 2005, so its term ends in 2029 not 2019 as is being said, open to extension. via Karl

We all know that the St Georges Club in Beirut and Solidere are not friends, and it seems the St Georges is optimistic that Solidere will come to an end in 2019. The reason why they are saying so is because Solidere was created in 1994 and its life span was limited to 25 years and cannot be renewed legally. Honestly, I am pretty sure they will figure out a way to renew Solidere’s contract or replace it with a similar company under a different name. Nevertheless, I wonder who will take over Solidere’s tasks if the company ceased to exist.

solidere2

Thanks Hadi!

Lebanese Red Cross Road Accidents Statistics For 2014: 10866 Accidents, 14516 Injuries And 229 Kills

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red cross

If we look back at 2013, there were 11,552 injuries according to the Lebanese Red Cross so the number has increased by almost 3000 this year which is huge! As far as the kills and accidents are concerned, I couldn’t find the full 2013 report but I assume the numbers are up this year as well.

I tried to compare the LRC statistics to the ones published by Kunhadi (via the ISF), but they don’t match at all. In fact, Kunhadi registered lower crashes (3420) and injuries (4690) this year, but 537 fatalities which is twice as much as the number reported by the Red Cross.

I don’t know which numbers are more accurate, but the sure thing is that road safety is still a major problem in Lebanon and the Lebanese authorities as well as all the NGOs concerned should be taking further measures. In fact, I think NGOs should cut down a bit on the awareness campaigns and take further practical measures on the roads, like installing safety barriers, fixing potholes or covering them, or even setting up checkpoints with the help of the ISF or municipalities on dangerous roads.

ll

Lebanon Featured On The North Face’s Instagram Account

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northface

The North Face featured on its Instagram account this stunning picture of Tannourine that was taken by team climber @bookofsamuel. The picture shows Will Nazarian, an Armenian/American climber, who’s been climbing all over Lebanon and has some amazing videos on the Rock climbing Association for Development page [R-A-D.org].

Tannourine

Check this video below taken in Tannourine

[YouTube]

Thanks Sarhad!

Father Of Lebanese Wine And Owner Of The World-Renowed Château Musar Serge Hochar Dies On New Year’s Eve

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Hochar

Lebanese wine industry legend Serge Hochar and the owner of world-renowed Chateau Musar has died in a swimming accident on New Year’s Eve in Mexico. Hochar is considered as the father of Lebanese wine and has helped Lebanon’s wine industry reach international acclaim.

Hochar studied the wine business in France and took over his father’s vineyard in 1959. In 1967, Château Musar’s reds won international approval and helped put Lebanon’s modern-day wine-making on the map. He was named Decanter magazine’s Man of the Year in 1984 for continuing to produce wine during Lebanon’s 1975-90 civil war, mostly from vineyards in the Bekaa Valley.

Here’s a beautiful tribute by Cathy Huyghe:

Ms Gilbert wrote about what you did, at 11 o’clock one morning in 1990 when Beirut (and your own apartment building) began to shake from shells dropped during a Syrian assault. You should have run to the bomb shelter. Instead you slowly poured a whole bottle of your 1972 Château Musar into a decanter, walked to the bedroom of your apartment, and closed the door behind you. For twelve hours you sat, and you listened. To the shelling, of course. And to the wine.

“What do you have to say to me now?” you asked your wine, hour after hour, sip after sip.

You listened.

And you survived that day. Somehow. Your winery did too, on the land of Lebanon and in the marketplace of the world.

You and your Château Musar have been the standard-bearer of wine from Lebanon, and from nearly the entire region, for a generation. You have inspired people you weren’t supposed to inspire. You have resisted others. You have persevered. You have relished life.

What’s better is that you have toasted it.

In some ways the current generation of winemakers in Lebanon operate with a different agenda than you did, and that too is as it should be. Times have changed, as you knew, and so have motivations, and politics, and even war. But there is no arguing that you have shaped the landscape of wine in the Middle East, and the concentric circles of influence that emanate outward from it.

For that I toast you, M. Hochar.

I toast your perseverance.

And I toast the lesson of listening – to the land, and especially to the wine.

What To Expect When You Order A Pizza Pepperoni With Ham At A Cedars Restaurant?

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ham

This story took place on the first day of the year and was shared by LebaneseMemes. A group of 11 people visited a restaurant in the Cedars on January 1 and ordered a pizza pepperoni with ham among other things. That’s what they got apparently lol! Here’s what the chef said to explain it: “I didn’t incorporate the Ham in the pizza because I was worried the waiter would make a mistake and serve it to someone else”.

The restaurant staff probably hadn’t recovered yet from New Year’s Eve but that’s still hilarious! The pizza looks good by the way.