Lebanon economic crisis: Medicines are running out

Lebanon economic crisis: Medicines are running out

Murad Makhmudov and Lee Jay Walker

Modern Tokyo Times

Lebanon is in economic and political crisis because of internal and external issues. This nation is multi-ethnic and multi-religious that comprises many different Christian and Muslim sects. Also, the Druze community is strong in certain parts of the country. However, the power dynamics of Iran, Israel, Palestine, and Syria have all engulfed this nation negatively – along with mass immigration comprising Palestinians, Syrians, and other immigrants and refugees fleeing regional convulsions.

During the height of the Palestinian power-play, the PLO (Palestinian Liberation Organization) was a state-within-a-state. The PLO highlighted the past weakness of Lebanon – just like Israel and the South Lebanon Army that was disbanded in 2000 – to Iran in modern times based on utilizing Hezbollah for geopolitical goals. Therefore, the enormous economic ill-winds of modern times and the coronavirus (Covid-19) convulsions – along with endless internal political cronyism – all equates to a troubled nation-state.

Turning to 2021 and the ongoing economic crisis. The World Bank said, “The social impact of the crisis, which is already dire, could rapidly become catastrophic; more than half the population is likely below the national poverty line. Lebanon, with a history of civil war and conflicts, faces realistic threats to its already fragile social peace.”

The New York Times reports, “Inside Lebanon, the crisis has created a distinct sense that the country is coming undone, as all but the wealthiest spend their days sweating through frequent blackouts, waiting in fuel lines that wrap around city blocks, and running from pharmacy to pharmacy to search for medicines that have disappeared from shelves.”

The plight of Lebanon is visible by the demise of gross domestic product falling to $33 billion in 2020 from $55 billion in 2018. Naturally, per capita income is falling dramatically for vast numbers of people. Likewise, unemployment and poverty are increasing. Therefore, these horrendous economic ill winds mean roughly half the population is suffering from poverty – while the rich elite plays the global stock market.

Medicine shortages – just like in Venezuela – are happening to the detriment of the people of Lebanon. The BBC reports, “Some Lebanese healthcare companies have already run out of medicines needed to treat cancer and heart disease.”

The Independent reports, “Crippling inflation has meant that families are struggling to deal with the surge in prices of medication and nearly a third of children do not have access to primary health care they need.”

Lebanon is faced with countless problems that are threatening the fabric of society.

https://www.worldbank.org/en/country/lebanon/publication/lebanon-economic-monitor-spring-2021-lebanon-sinking-to-the-top-3

https://www.bbc.com/news/world-middle-east-57714304

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/lebanon-food-shortages-un-poverty-b1876211.html

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