(BEIRUT, LEBANON) — The United States donated $25 million worth of weapons and ammunition to the Lebanese Army on Sunday, marking the latest American assistance to Lebanon as it fights extremists along the border with Syria.
U.S. Ambassador to Lebanon David Hale said the shipment included 70 U.S. made towed field artillery M198 Howitzers and 26 million rounds of ammunition.
“Recent attacks against Lebanon’s Army only strengthen America’s resolve to stand in solidarity with the people of Lebanon to confront these threats,” a statement by the U.S. Embassy said.
Lebanon is fifth largest recipient of U.S. foreign military funding for 2014, according to Hale. He added that $100 million were given to Lebanon last year and over a $1 billion worth since 2006.
“We are fighting the same enemy, so our support for you has been swift and continuous,” Hale said from Beirut’s port. “We are very proud of this and this is top-of-the-line equipment. This is the best that there is in the marketplace. It’s what our soldiers use.”
Lebanese and American officials attended a handover ceremony Sunday at Beirut’s port, including Lebanese Brigadier General Manuel Kerejian, who oversaw the delivery alongside Hale.
Hale says U.S. help to Lebanon will continue “until the job is done.”
“I know that in a matter of days it’s going to be what your brave soldiers are using in the battle to defeat terrorism and extremism that is pouring across the border from Syria.”
This is the latest aid promised to Lebanon. In November, France and Saudi Arabia signed an agreement for Paris to provide the Lebanese army with $3 billion worth of weapons, but those weapons are not expected to arrive until April.
VIDEO: Lebanon gets massive weapons shipment from the United States: