The British Embassy in Beirut denies the news that it had purchased ‘data’ from the Lebanese…and this is what it confirmed

The British Embassy in Beirut issued a statement saying:

The British Embassy in Beirut categorically rejects the false, misleading and unfounded allegations made in a report published by Al Akhbar newspaper on 9 January 2023 about UK support for Project IMPACT. We are and remain proud of our contribution to anti-corruption efforts in Lebanon, including the important work of the IMPACT platform, Central Inspection and Judge Georges Attieh.

The British Embassy entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with the Central Inspection on August 20, 2021, detailing the Governance, Oversight and Accountability project. The Government of Lebanon mentioned the project in its financial plan issued on April 30, 2020. This project consists of technical assistance to the Central Inspection. Despite the baseless accusations, the project respects the highest international standards of data protection and security by using leading providers in this field.

We regret that the editors of Al-Akhbar newspaper did not contact us for comment before publishing the article. This would enable us to correct a number of errors and misunderstandings contained therein.

IMPACT’s work is pioneering and the first of its kind in Lebanon. Improving access to e-governance provides the necessary transparency and accountability. Among the most prominent achievements of IMPACT is the implementation of the Coronavirus Vaccine Insurance Program and the Social Safety Net of the World Bank.

The UK is clear that Lebanese leaders must focus on forming a government that secures the needed reforms, including reaching an agreement with the International Monetary Fund. It is a vital step to alleviate the economic crisis and improve the lives of the Lebanese.

In fact, we have always referred to the spread of corruption in the governance systems in Lebanon, and the latest of these references came in an article signed last month by the ambassadors of the Group of Seven, along with the ambassador of the European Union, on the occasion of the International Anti-Corruption Day. We will continue to work with our international partners to support programs and institutions committed to fighting corruption and promoting transparency, both of which are essential to a better future for Lebanon.

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