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First shipment of Iranian fuel arrives in crisis-hit Lebanon

First shipment of Iranian fuel 
arrives in crisis-hit Lebanon

dpa
Beirut
The first shipment of Iranian fuel oil for Lebanon arrived in the country Thursday, secured on its journey by Tehran’s main ally Hezbollah.
Several fuel tanker trucks carrying Iranian diesel entered eastern Lebanon and are now on their way to the city of Baalbek, a witness told dpa, adding that more deliveries are on their way.
The fuel had earlier arrived by cargo ship in the Syrian port of Baniyas before being offloaded.
Hezbollah’s Al Manar television station, which described the scene as a “truck convoy to break the American siege,” showed a cheering crowd of people loyal to Hezbollah lining the streets and throwing rice and flowers at the trucks.
Hezbollah chief Hassan Nasrallah announced last month that Iran was ready to send supplies to Lebanon to ease the country’s fuel shortage and crippling economic crisis.
Hezbollah’s deal came despite the fact that Iran is under US sanctions and is banned from exporting its oil. The US has warned that it will impose sanctions on whoever purchases Iranian oil.
Nasrallah in a speech on Monday said that a second ship with fuel oil would arrive in Baniyas in a few days, and it will be followed by a third and fourth shipment.
Lebanon, which is suffering through its worst economic crisis since its 1975-90 civil war, is facing a severe fuel shortage putting the health and other vital sectors in the country on the brink of collapse.
Power cuts have recently been frequent. Private generators are unable to provide electricity most of the time due to the lack of fuel.  The arrival of the Iranian fuel came days after a new government, headed by Prime Minister Nagib Mikati, was formed thus ending 13-months of political deadlock in the country.

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