Trump administration quietly releases Lebanon aid

The Associated Press

The Trump administration released more than $100 million in military assistance to Lebanon before Thanksgiving, two congressional staffers and an administration official confirmed to the Associated Press on the condition of anonymity.

The White House and the Office of Management and Budget have declined to comment on the matter.

Democratic Sen. Chris Murphy, who sits on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee and recently traveled to Lebanon, said there was "no legitimate security rationale to withhold funding".

A senior administration official confirmed to Insider that the U.S. is "providing $105 million in foreign military financing for the Lebanese Armed Forces".

U.S. President Donald Trump speaks to reporters as he and first lady Melania Trump depart for travel to a North Atlantic Treaty Organisation summit in London, from the White House in Washington, U.S. December 2, 2019.

The $105 million in foreign military funding for the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) was approved by Congress and had strong support within the Pentagon, State Department, and National Security Council, but it was placed on hold for months. It was likened to the Ukraine aid hold-up, which sparked a full-blown impeachment inquiry against President Trump.

More news: Study Links Hair Straighteners, Dyes to Breast Cancer

As lawmakers demanded answers from the administration about why the aid had been withheld, some compared it with a similar decision from the administration to withhold almost $400 million in security assistance to Ukraine that also had been approved by Congress.

Asked about the freeze in aid to Ukraine, a key element of the impeachment question, Hale said that he learned in June that assistance was on hold to both Ukraine and Lebanon "without any explanation".

Hale, the third-highest ranking official in the State Department, told House investigators he had "not received an explanation for hold on the Lebanese assistance program".

Lawmakers such as Rep. Eliot Engel, the chairman of the House Foreign Affairs Committee and Sen. Murphy said in response to the release.

As with the Ukraine assistance, OMB did not explain the delay. "Our assistance is crucial to help Lebanon counter Iran-backed Hezbollah and other groups threatening the region", Deutch wrote on Twitter.

On Monday, the senior State official said on a conference call with reporters that Lebanon's army is "an excellent partner to the United States" in fighting extremism.

Related News:

  • Chelsea vs. Aston Villa - Football Match Report

    Chelsea vs. Aston Villa - Football Match Report

    Chelsea manager Frank Lampard expects to be told "very soon" whether the club's transfer ban has been lifted. Chelsea keeper Kepa Arrizabalaga denied Ezri Konsa Ngoyo an equaliser in the dying moments.
    Head of Japanese NGO Attacked in Nangarhar

    Head of Japanese NGO Attacked in Nangarhar

    Media captionThe BBC was given exclusive access to spend a week with ambulance workers in Afghanistan. After qualifying as a doctor, Nakamura moved to Pakistan in the 1980s to treat patients with leprosy.
    Carolina Panthers Head Coach Ron Rivera Has Just Been Fired

    Carolina Panthers Head Coach Ron Rivera Has Just Been Fired

    In an article from the Carolina Panthers , Rivera reflects on his career with the team while packing up his office. The Carolina Panthers are in a state of flux as they parted ways with Ron Rivera, their head coach of nine years.
  • Richarlison signs new Everton deal until 2024

    Richarlison signs new Everton deal until 2024

    Richarlison has been one of the positives of a tough 18 months for the Blues with manager Marco Silva fighting the sack. Despite the daunting challenge facing them at Anfield, Silva said his side would go there with confidence.
    Chris Petersen steps down as Washington coach after six seasons

    Chris Petersen steps down as Washington coach after six seasons

    Jimmy is a great teacher of the game and his track record of developing young men both on and off the field speaks for itself. Petersen, Lake and UW Athletic Director Jennifer Cohen will address reporters at a news conference Tuesday morning.
    Huawei plans to shift research center to Canada from US

    Huawei plans to shift research center to Canada from US

    Meng was detained in Vancouver, December 2018, on an extradition request by the USA over claims Huawei violated sanctions on Iran. The blacklist was imposed by the Trump administration in May, with most USA companies banned from selling to the Chinese company.
  • The Final Battle Begins in the New 'Star Wars' TV Spot

    The Final Battle Begins in the New 'Star Wars' TV Spot

    The new Rise of Skywalker content will also include the new location of the jungle planet featured in the last full trailer for the film , new reinforcements, and Hero Appearances.
    Apples are expected to launch four 5G iPhone in 2020, JPMorgan said

    Apples are expected to launch four 5G iPhone in 2020, JPMorgan said

    According to Chatterjee, all of these models will be available with 5G connectivity and all will have an OLED display. As such, the firm can change the design of its devices in response to market feedback twice as fast as before.
    Howard Stern Blames Simon Cowell For Gabrielle Union

    Howard Stern Blames Simon Cowell For Gabrielle Union "AGT" Controversy

    Osbourne, who left the show in 2012, said on " The Talk " that she "left because of NBC, not because of the show". NBC said in a statement to CNN on Monday they are working with Union to "hear more about her concerns".
  • New charges are likely in case against Rudy Giuliani associates, prosecutors say

    New charges are likely in case against Rudy Giuliani associates, prosecutors say

    A prosecutor said an upgraded indictment is likely in the criminal case against two Rudy Giuliani associates with ties to Ukraine. Joseph Bondy, an attorney for Parnas, said his client wanted to comply with the House Intelligence Committee subpoena to testify.

    Motorola, Xiaomi, Oppo Promise High-End, Snapdragon 865 Phones

    Oppo has also joined Qualcomm's Tech Summit to announce that it will be launching a device in the first part of 2020. OEMs will need to design 5G phones with a separate 5G modem (the X55) that links with the 865.
    Messi: Argentina boss hopes 2020 Copa América isn't star's last

    Messi: Argentina boss hopes 2020 Copa América isn't star's last

    Following the 2020 Copa America, the tournament is set to be held every four years with the next edition scheduled for 2024. Argentina last won the Copa America in 1993 and the nation is desperate to finally get their hands on the trophy once again.


Most liked

Falcon Heavy Launch Lofts Arabsat-6A and Achieves Historic Triple Rocket Landing
This is the same launched astronauts Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins and Buzz Aldrin took off from towards the Moon in 1969. It was less than four years ago when it completed the first successful Falcon 9 landing on a Cape Canaveral launch pad.

Mitt Romney and Lindsey Graham say Ukraine didn't meddle in 2016 election
He later added, "So as to the Ukraine, they had zero to do with the hacking of the DNC and the stealing of the emails. House Republicans have also pushed the narrative that Ukraine was opposed to Trump and worked against him in 2016.

Zinedine Zidane still determined to sign Manchester United's Paul Pogba
"I left the club, I took my time to process everything that happened, I took my time to prepare myself for the next challenge". It was back in 2009 that Real Madrid coordinated arguably their most important summer of transfers in their recent history .

Injured Johnson to miss Hero World Challenge
He's such a dominant player. "When do I relinquish the captaincy role and officially have someone be the captain?" he stated. "My swing felt pretty good tonight", said Woods, who has won the Hero World Challenge five times, but not since 2011.

What's next for the Trump impeachment inquiry?
The committee based the report on weeks of private and public testimony from more than a dozen diplomats and other officials. Karlan, a Stanford law professor, told House lawmakers on December 4 that she was "insulted" by Republican Rep.

Trump enters war of words between Macron, Erdogan
Turkey has threatened to block a plan to defend Baltic states and Poland against Russian attacks unless the alliance backs Ankara in recognizing the Kurdish YPG militia as a terrorist group.

Greta Thunberg: Sustainable living should be easier
This year was hotter than average in most parts of the world, including the Arctic. She's on her way to Spain to attend a United Nations climate change conference.

U.S. solar industry to lose 62,000 jobs due to Trump tariffs
This surprise announcement came as investors paid close attention to the main trade war - between the U.S. and China. Rural voters, including farmers, are a key constituency for Trump as he heads into the 2020 presidential elections.

Trump calls Trudeau ‘two-faced’ after video appears to show leaders gossiping
Trudeau's character before, calling him "very dishonest and weak" after last year's G-7 summit in Quebec, where Mr. Earlier in the day, Trump spoke with reporters for almost an hour at the USA ambassador's residence in London .

Nova Scotia man dies in pileup on Ontario highway
Kingston is under winter weather conditions and travel advisory with up to 15 centimeters of snowfall anticipated by Sunday night. Matthew Robert Jamieson, 33, from Nova Scotia died on the scene of a major collision that involved 30 to 40 vehicles on Sunday.

Z marks 50th birthday by restoring back catalogue to Spotify
You also had no worries if you're from the old days of physical copies and uploaded the files to your computer (what a time). Jay-Z has over 8.4 million monthly listeners per his Spotify page, which will gain a considerable boost in the short term.

Wes Ball working on Planet of the Apes movie
Tim Burton revived the franchise in 2001 as an action thriller, which didn't generate much love despite its box office numbers . Previously, Disney was forced to put Ball's adaptation of " Mouse Guard " into turnaround as part of the fallout of the merger.

Trump '20 Denies Bloomberg News Credentials
We'll decide whether or not to interact with particular person reporters or reply inquires from Bloomberg Information on a case-by-case foundation.

Ukraine President Denies Quid Pro Quo With Donald Trump
He said he never discussed with Trump any connection between a delay in U.S military aid and Trump's request for investigations. Throughout the controversy, one phrase has stood out-quid pro quo, a Latin phrase meaning "something for something".

Focus Mode Comes Out of Beta on Android
Focus Mode was first announced at Google's I/O developer conference this May, and has been in beta testing until now, Google says. After a few months of polishing everything up and adding some new features, Google's now rolling Focus mode out to everyone.