Defence Secretary sets out package of support to Lebanon

Royal Navy survey ship HMS Enterprise will sail to Lebanon as part of a wide-ranging package of military support made available by Defence Secretary Ben Wallace.

The survey vessel will travel to Lebanon to assess the damage of Beirut’s port following last week’s explosion and help return it to normal operations. The deployment of the ship will complement an immediate package of military and civilian support and £5 million worth of aid.

Defence Secretary Ben Wallace said: “At the request of the Lebanese Government I have authorised the sending of HMS Enterprise to help survey the Port of Beirut, assessing the damage and supporting Lebanon rebuild this vital piece of national infrastructure.

We have a close and enduring friendship with the Lebanese people, our military is ready to support them in their time of need.”

The Port of Beirut is crucially important for the economic stability of Lebanon and receives the majority of the country’s imports.

HMS Enterprise is currently docked in Limassol and will make her way to Lebanon in due course. The UK is working with the Lebanese authorities to determine the optimum time for the ship’s deployment.

The UK Armed Forces is also deploying a small team to the UK Embassy in Beirut to help identify requirements and coordinate the package of wider support to the Lebanese Armed Forces. This includes the offer of tailored medical support, military air transport assistance and engineering and communications capabilities.

The UK’s Chief of Defence Staff General Sir Nick Carter called General Joseph Aoun, Commander of Lebanon’s Armed Forces, on Tuesday evening to offer his condolences.

image © MOD Crown Copyright

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