- Press Release -

Media & Public Relation Office

Washington DC - October 2, 2006


In response to President Bushís commitment to the reconstruction of Lebanon, The ALC renews its trust in the Presidentís initiatives towards Lebanon

WASHINGTON Ė On September 23rd, President Bush designated a presidential delegation from the public and private sector to help rebuild Lebanon.

Deputy Under Secretary of State Dina Powell headed the delegation that visited Lebanon along with private sector leaders John Chambers, President and CEO of Cisco Systems, Craig Barrett Chairman of Intel Corporation, Youssef Ghafari Chairman of Ghafari, Ray Irani Chairman CEO Occidental Petroleum Corporation among others.

Last Monday, and after their audience with the President, members of the Presidential Delegation met during a conference call with Leaders from the Lebanese American Community and others from the Arab American Community. The President of the American Lebanese Coalition (ALC) Joseph Gebeily M.D. and Vice Presidents Mr. Joseph Hage and Mr. Milad Zohrob joined the conference where Powell briefed the Leaders on the delegationís recent visit to Lebanon and announced the creation of a $160 million fund by the U.S. Overseas Private Investment Corp. (OPIC) where Citibank will guarantee the financing to small- and medium-sized businesses and provide construction loans to families. Moreover Cisco, Intel and Ghafari will provide $10 million to create jobs and training programs for the Lebanese. Also, Powell announced the launching of the website www.lebanonpartnership.org to promote the efforts of the presidential initiative.

The ALC has always trusted the Presidentís initiatives and commitments towards Lebanon and this project is an example of the Bush Administrationís commitment to rebuild not only infrastructure but also democracy in Lebanon. The Lebanese American Community is ever grateful to the Presidentís support for the Cedar Revolution that freed Lebanon from 29 years of Syrian oppression and resulted in a democratically elected parliament and government.

In response to the Presidentís appeal, the ALC is prepared to launch a targeted effort towards the Lebanese-American community, and is thrilled and confident that Lebanese American Business Leaders will participate in the reconstruction of Lebanon.


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