The Lebanese Organization of Studies and Training organized a meeting with key-figures in Baalbeck- Hermel at its premises in Baalbeck on December 17th 2013 to follow on “Building the Capacity of Civil Institutions to Provide Services and Legal Awareness to Stateless People”, a project funded by the World Bank.
The Meeting was held in the presence of Mufti of Baalbeck Sheikh Ayman Al-Rifai, The head of Religious Court in Baalbeck Sheikh Talib Joumaa, representatives of political parties, mayors, municipality members, mukhtars, non-governmental organization representatives, activists and stateless people.
Dr. Ramy Lakkis, the founder of LOST, delivered a presentation on the issue of Stateless People in Baalbeck- Hermel and the drastic social, economic, and political effects resulting from ignoring it. Lakkis then presented the organization’s initiatives to tackle this problem by coordinating with the World Bank to fund a project entitled “Building the Capacity of Civil Institutions to Provide Services and Legal Awareness to Stateless People”. He also regretted the bureaucratic regulations between the Ministry of Finance (MoF) and the World Bank which could impede the implementation of the project. Bolstered by the benefit of such an initiative, all attendees representing local community signed a petition that supports the project and agreed to send an appeal to the Minister of Finance and the Director of the World Bank- MENA region Mr. Ferid Belhaj requesting the immediate approval of the project for the welfare of Baalbeck-Hermel citizens.