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

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His camera has captured conflict from Northern Ireland to Vietnam. An exhibition at Tate Britain in London shows some of his finest work.
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As Hezbollah Rises in Lebanon’s Government, Fears About U.S. Response Follow (Fri, 01 Feb 2019)
The Iran-backed group Hezbollah and its allies took key posts in Lebanon’s new cabinet, raising concerns that American sanctions could entangle state services for an already struggling nation.
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A League of Their Own, as Few Arab Leaders Attend Summit (Sun, 20 Jan 2019)
The red carpet was there as the Arab League held its fourth economic and social summit. But it was trod upon by only the smallest of feet.
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Israel, in Rare Admission, Confirms Strike on Iranian Targets in Syria (Sun, 13 Jan 2019)
By lifting the veil on its campaign to curb Iranian influence in the region, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu appeared to be trying to convey confidence during his re-election campaign.
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What Real Border Security Looks Like (Thu, 10 Jan 2019)
Republicans and Democrats should agree to build an Israeli-style “smart fence.”
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