Lebanon needs “six to seven years” to emerge from the crisis it is currently in, the country’s president has said.
In a televised interview, Michel Aoun said Lebanon had reached this point as a result of “misdeeds, theft, corruption, and failures by the system” and that a much-needed “intellectual and practical” change would surely be implemented to correct it, news agencies said on Saturday .
“What the Lebanese people are suffering and living today is a result of deeds by those in power in the past who were entrusted with citizen’s lives,” he reiterated Friday in a tweet.
Lebanon is in the third year of an economic meltdown that began in 2019 when the financial system collapsed under the weight of huge state debt and lack of foreign currency – the result of decades of corruption, economic mismanagement, and unsustainable financing.
Aoun’s comments came just days after UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres made scathing comments on the causes of Lebanon’s financial collapse in a leaked video circulated on social media.
“As far as I understand what has happened in Lebanon is that Lebanon was using something similar to a Ponzi scheme… which means that together with corruption and other, probably, forms of stealing, the financial system has collapsed,” Guterres said in the video.
Many other critics of the Lebanese authorities have compared the financial system to a Ponzi scheme, depending on fresh borrowing to pay back existing…