Greece’s relations with Lebanon are traditionally very friendly and are characterized by mutual respect and trust. The reasons for this are not purely historical in nature: Greece hosted 30,000 Lebanese citizens during the Lebanese Civil War (1975-1990).
In the political and diplomatic field, there is excellent cooperation, whereas within all international fora there is mutual support for candidacies. Greece actively supported Lebanon during the war in 2006, responding immediately to the request for provision of humanitarian aid, and continues to contribute to the country’s reconstruction on an economic and political level. Greece is also participating in the funding of the Special Tribunal for Lebanon – which was set up to prosecute those responsible for the murder of former Lebanese prime minister Rafik Hariri – and is funding a number of development programmes, including the reconstruction of the Palestinian refugee camp of Nahr el Bared. Moreover, Greece’s firm stance in favour of a just, comprehensive and permanent solution to the Middle East problem – which is a major issue in Lebanese foreign policy, for geographical reasons and due to the large number of Palestinian refugees residing in Lebanon – contributes to maintaining the friendly relations between the two countries.
There were no more than 2,500 Greeks in Lebanon before the end of the last war, and most of them were transported outside the country by Greek vessels to avoid the military operations. There is a Greek Community and a Greek Club in Beirut.