Geography

Geography
Area: 10,452 sq. km. (4,015 sq. km.) about 0.7 times the size of Connecticut.
Cities: Capital--Beirut (pop. 1.5 million). Other cities--Tripoli/Trablus (210,000), Zahle (60,000),
Sidon/Sayda (50,000), Tyre/Sur (20,000), Byblos/Jbail (10,000).
Terrain: Narrow coastal plain; El Beqaa (Bekaa Valley) separates Lebanon and Anti-Lebanon Mountains.
Climate: Mediterranean; mild to cool, wet winters with hot, dry summers; Lebanon mountains experience heavy winter snows.

 

 

People and Economy

People
Nationality: noun and adjective--Lebanese (singular and plural).
Population (2010 est., IMF): 3,908,000.
Population growth rate (2010 est., IMF): 1.3%.
Major ethnic groups: Arab 95%, Armenian 4%, other 1% (note: many Christian Lebanese do not identify themselves as Arab but rather as descendents of the ancient Canaanites and prefer to be called Phoenicians).
Religions: Muslim 60% (Shia, Sunni, Druze, Isma'ili, Alawite or Nusayri), Christian 39% (Maronite Catholic, Greek Orthodox, Melkite Catholic, Armenian Orthodox, Syrian Catholic, Armenian Catholic, Syrian Orthodox, Roman Catholic, Chaldean, Assyrian, Copt, Protestant), other 1%.
Languages: Arabic (official), English, French, Armenian.
Education: Years compulsory--8. Attendance--99%. Literacy (2007 est.)--89.6%; 93.4% male, 85.96% female.
Health (2009 est.): Infant mortality rate--11.1/1,000. Life expectancy--72; 70 male, 74 female.
Work force (2009 est.): 1.4 million (World Bank - World Development Indicators).

Economy
GDP (2010 est.): $39.2 billion.
GDP growth rate (2010 est.): 7.5%.
Per capita GDP (2010 est.): $10,044.
Natural resources: limestone, iron ore, salt.
Agriculture: Products--citrus, grapes, tomatoes, apples, vegetables, potatoes, olives, tobacco; sheep, goats. Arable land (2008)--14.1%.
Industry: Types--banking, tourism, food processing, jewelry, cement, textiles, mineral and chemical products, wood and furniture products, oil refining, metal fabricating.
Trade: Exports--$4.253 billion (2010, f.o.b.): authentic jewelry, electrical equipment and products, base metals, food products, chemicals products, paper and paper products.Major markets--Switzerland, U.A.E., France. Imports--$17.964 billion (2010, f.o.b.): mineral products, electrical equipment and products, transport vehicles, chemical products, metal and metal products, food products, medicinal products, clothing, meat and live animals, consumer goods, tobacco. Major suppliers--U.S., China, Italy.

 

Government

Government
Type: Republic.
Independence: November 22, 1943.
Constitution: May 23, 1926.
Branches: Executive--president (chief of state), prime minister (head of government), deputy prime minister, cabinet. Legislative--unicameral national assembly. Judicial--four Courts of Cassation, Constitutional Council, Supreme Council.
Administrative subdivisions: 8 governorates.
Political parties: Amal Movement, Ba'ath Party, Democratic Left, Democratic Renewal Movement, Free Patriotic Movement, Future Movement, Hizballah, Kataeb Party, Kataeb Reform Movement, Lebanese Forces, National Bloc, Marada Movement, Nasserite Popular Movement, National Liberal Party, Popular Bloc, Progressive Socialist Party, Qornet Shehwan Gathering, Syrian Social National Party, Tachnaq Party.
Suffrage: 21; compulsory for all males; authorized for women at 21 with elementary education.

 

 

Lebanon

What We Know and Don’t Know About the Beirut Explosions (Wed, 05 Aug 2020)
More than 100 people were killed, and the second blast was felt in Cyprus. An investigation and a search for survivors are underway.
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As Death Toll Rises After Blast, a Search for Answers and Survivors: Live Updates (Wed, 05 Aug 2020)
Rescue workers dug through rubble as fires continued to burn in Beirut, the Lebanese capital, where an explosion killed more than 100 and left tens of thousands homeless.
>> Read more

I Was Bloodied and Dazed. Beirut Strangers Treated Me Like a Friend. (Tue, 04 Aug 2020)
In a land conditioned by calamity, people knew what to do, including helping wounded people they didn’t know.
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Mapping the Damage From the Beirut Explosion (Tue, 04 Aug 2020)
Damage was seen at least two miles from the explosion, encompassing an area with more than 750,000 residents.
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Blasts Rock Beirut, Killing Dozens and Wounding Thousands (Tue, 04 Aug 2020)
The cause remained unclear hours later. But officials in the Lebanese capital said 2,750 tons of highly explosive ammonium nitrate had been stored in a depot at the center of the explosion.
>> Read more

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