Minister Suspends All Sports Events in Lebanon Until End of March

As Lebanon continues to power through a spread of Coronavirus within its borders, various ministers across the country are doing their part in the prevention and management process of the outbreak.

Lebanese Minister of Youth and Sports, Ms. Varti Ohanian, stated on Friday that all sporting events and activities of youth associations planned until the end of March throughout the Lebanese territory are to be suspended.

This, she states is the latest measure in order to prevent the spread of the COVID-19 epidemic. A press release from Ms. Ohanian stated: “The Ministry calls on all the federations, associations, sports and youth clubs, as well as the scout associations, to suspend their activities until the end of March.”

With regard to events planned on the international scene, the Minister calls on the concerned associations to provide the ministry with “all the necessary information” in order to take the appropriate preventive measures.

Sixteen cases of people infected with the new coronavirus have been detected in Lebanon in recent weeks, with 6 new on Friday, bringing the total number to 22.

In all cases, except one which source is still being tracked, these are patients who have contracted the disease abroad or have worked with a person who recently returned to Lebanon.

In response to the epidemic, schools and universities that were closed this week were ordered to extend the shut down another week.

New precautionary measures by the state entail the closure of nightclubs, sports clubs, and all institutions of gathering. 

Nominated by the Tashnag political party, Ohanian has had an extensive career in Social Work prior to her appointment as Lebanon’s Minister of Youth and Sports.

In previous capacities, between 2017 and 2019, she headed the Special Education Center in the Bourj Hammoud district of Beirut known as the Zvartnots Center. The center caters to children with special needs.

She is close to the theologian Katholikos Aram I and the Tachnag party. On January 21, 2020, she was proposed by the Tachnag Party as the representative of the Armenian Orthodox population, to be Minister for Youth and Sports in the Cabinet of Hassan Diab.

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