Canada established diplomatic relations with Lebanon in 1954, when Canada deployed "Envoy Extraordinaire" to Beirut. In 1958, Canada sent its first Ambassador. The Embassy was closed in 1985 and reopened in January 1995. Lebanon opened a consulate in Canada in 1946. A Consulate-General replaced the Consulate in 1949, and an Embassy opened in 1958.
Canada–Lebanon relations are rooted in the strong ties generated by Canada’s important Lebanese community and the large Canadian diaspora in Lebanon. The first Lebanese immigrants arrived in Montreal in 1882 and, during the 1975-1990 civil war, Canada gave refuge to thousands of affected Lebanese. The community is now estimated to amount close to 350,000 people, making it the largest ethnic Arab group in Canada. The evacuation in 2006 of Canadians from Lebanon was the largest in Canada's history and spoke of the importance of this diaspora community. This relationship is strengthened by the close cultural ties of the two nation, including mutual participation in la Francophonie.
Indicative of the importance of these relations, Canada contributed $30.5 million to respond to humanitarian relief, reconstruction and stabilization efforts following the 2006 conflict. In addition, at the International Conference of Support to Lebanon, Canada announced a contribution of $20 million to support the government of Prime Minister Siniora as it works to implement its reform agenda and tackle the deficit and debt problem that is constraining Lebanon’s growth and threatening its long-term economic sustainability.
Canada continues to raise its concerns over the political crisis gripping the country and the violence which threatens Lebanon’s stability and prosperity.