Lebanon is facing overwhelming socioeconomic, security, and demographic challenges as the civil war in neighboring Syria enters its seventh year. Since the start of the crisis, Lebanon has received $4.9 billion in assistance, but demands on the country's resources, services, and civil order remain heavy. Without a political solution to the Syrian conflict, humanitarian and development aid cannot deliver and sustain sufficient results for the refugees or for the Lebanese people. How will Lebanon continue to deal with these conditions?
The Middle East Institute (MEI) and the Johns Hopkins School of Advanced International Studies, Foreign Policy Institute (SAIS-FPI) were pleased to host Philippe Lazzarini, the United Nations deputy special coordinator in Lebanon. He discussed opportunities and challenges for shifting the international response to Lebanon's Syrian refugee crisis beyond short-term humanitarian and stabilization efforts to a more sustainable economic growth strategy.
Randa Slim, director of MEI's Track II Dialogues Initiative, moderated the discussion.
UN Deputy Special Coordinator, Lebanon
Philippe Lazzarini has extensive experience in humanitarian assistance and international coordination in conflict and post-conflict areas at senior levels, including through his latest assignment in the United Nations Assistance Mission in Somalia as Deputy Special Representative, Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator. Prior to this, he held a number of senior positions in the United Nations for the coordination of humanitarian affairs, and in various field positions in Iraq, Angola, Somalia and the Occupied Palestinian Territory. Prior to joining the United Nations in 2003, Lazzarini was heading the marketing department of a private bank in Geneva. He also served for 10 years with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) as the deputy Head of Communication, Head of the ICRC delegation in Rwanda, Angola, and Sarajevo and as an ICRC delegate in Southern Sudan, Jordan, Gaza, and Beirut.
Randa Slim (Moderator)
Director of Track II Dialogues Initiative, MEI; non-resident fellow, SAIS-FPI
Randa Slim is director of the Track II Dialogues initiative at MEI and a non-resident fellow at the SAIS-FPI. A former vice president of the International Institute for Sustained Dialogue, Slim has been a senior program advisor at the Rockefeller Brothers Fund, a guest scholar at the United States Institute of Peace, a program director at Resolve, Inc, and a program officer at the Kettering Foundation. A long-term practitioner of Track II dialogue and peace-building processes in the Middle East and Central Asia, she is the author of several studies, book chapters, and articles on conflict management, post-conflict peace-building, and Middle East politics.