Lebanon News

While Damascus’ rapprochement with the Arab World is accelerating, the United States and members of the European Union, among which France features prominently, still claim that their policy on Syria is unchanged. However, a growing number of French analysts have reported that powerful economic lobbies are pushing the French presidential palace to restore ties with the regime in the hope that France will reap economic benefits. The recent visit by a board member of the Damascus Chamber of Commerce to Paris only lends credence to these claims.
Ahead of the Turkish elections, one of the key areas of concern remains the future of Ankara's policy towards Syria and Syrian refugees. As Turkey continues to navigate the complexities of the Syrian conflict, it is important to understand how the election results may shape its approach towards its neighbouring country.
Syria has been readmitted into the Arab League more than a decade after its seat was frozen, marking a significant development in its reintegration into the Arab world. The decision will provide Damascus with a political boost and may encourage other countries in and outside of the Arab world to normalise and improve relations with Syria.
Although Jordan is at the forefront of rapprochement efforts with the regime, its air force allegedly launched two airstrikes over southern Syrian territory, killing an infamous drug lord and destroying a drug factory. The strikes came less than a week after Damascus agreed to tackle drug trafficking on its border with Jordan and Iraq and days after Amman seized its largest captagon shipment of the year.
Iran's crude oil exports to Syria appear to have remained high in the first quarter of 2023. Oil supplies in Q4, 2022 and Q1, 2023 were actually higher than in any quarter in the previous two-and-a-half years, which means that the reasons behind the shortages in previous months are still unclear. 
Governments and international organisations worldwide have offered aid and assistance to Syria after the recent earthquake. However, aid response and coordination efforts have been hampered by the destruction of roads and highways, weather conditions, fuel shortages, and territorial fragmentation across regime-opposition political lines, among other things.
Lebanon’s exports to Syria increased by 290 percent last year, according to the Lebanese Customs Authorities. Curiously, one commodity, polyethylene, made up 74 percent of Lebanon’s exports to Syria last year, surging by nearly 30,000 percent year-on-year despite accounting for lower volumes.