U.S. Assistant Secretary of State for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs arrived in Beirut Sunday, January 10, 2010, to observe the U.S.-funded capacity building program for the Internal Security Forces (ISF). While in Beirut, Ambassador Johnson and U.S. Ambassador to Lebanon Michele Sison met with the command staff of the ISF led by Director General Achraf Rifi. On January 11, Ambassadors Sison and Johnson spoke at a graduation of 286 ISF cadets who completed basic policing course funded by the US and instructed by U.S. and Lebanese policing experts. In addition 21 ISF lieutenants graduated from a three-month course of study in community policing that took place both in Lebanon and in the US.
To date the U.S. has provided training for over 3,500 ISF officers, cadets, supervisors and instructors, as well as delivered over 380 vehicles and refurbished ISF training facilities in Beirut. This assistance is part of a Department of State Bureau for International Narcotics and Law Enforcement Affairs initiative to assist legitimate, professional law enforcement institutions in Lebanon and is a symbol of our unwavering support for the ISF, the Lebanese government, the citizens of Lebanon and the implementation of United Nations Security Council Resolution 1701. This assistance will help to support the full sovereignty of the Lebanese Government representing all its people, and a Lebanese Internal Security Force capable of protecting Lebanon’s territory, sovereignty and dignity.