Syria, first T.E.O. overprint 2 and 3 Milliemes fakes

Recently appeared on the market dangerous fakes of the two most rare values of the first T.E.O. overprint stamps (Syria Yvert No. 2 and 3). They are of “Made in Lebanon” origin, but are offered from vendors based in other countries (fig 1 and 2).

Fake 1

Fake 2

Fig 1

Fig 2

Care must be taken because they are also “equipped” by the forged signature of the well-known philatelist expert A. Brun (fig 3).
fake 4
Fig 3

The difference from the original can be seen at great magnification (x 10) observing the outside boundaries of the typefaces used for overprinting. In the original they are net, while the fakes are jagged and with microscopic dots (fig 4). Warning, in the reverse is also present the distinctive emboss caused by overprint pressure.

Fig 4


The fakes Emir Bachir blocks

About the sheets issued by the Lebanese Republic in 1942, better known as the Proclamation of Independence or Emir Bachir (Yvert and Michel n. 2/7, 200 printing) I wish to clarify the difference between the original and the fakes existing in the market.


fig 1 – The fake

In the original the paper is smooth and the color yellowish-white, while the fakes can be observed in grayish-white paper (fig 1). This fake is dangerous but you can locate it easily by observing magnified. In fact, in the original, the arabesque immediately above “Republica” in Arabic is clearly visible in the four values on the stamps with the Emir Bachir effigy (fig 2). In the fake, the arabesque is missing, or rather, there are only very light dashes confused.


Fake 1

fig 2 – The original

fig 3 – The fake


In the two air stamps the original have dots that define the design they are more or less dense but are seen on the whole extension of the stamp (fig 5). In the fakes, especially in the areas indicated by the red arrows, these dots do not exist (fig 6).



fig 4 – The fake


Originale 1


fig 5 – The original

fig 6 – The fake



I hope I have helped those who are about to purchase these rare blocks.

Samir Chad













Emirates Fabricated Covers

We received this report by the friends of the EPA and promptly publish

P.O. BOX 33333 – DUBAI
5th January 2015

Emirates Fabricated Covers

During the year 2012, some fabricated envelopes were seen offered through online auctions or by specialized Middle East stamp dealers. In the meantime, EPA members were received what seems to be attractive offers of Trucial States envelopes. Since the year 2012, some of these fabricated covers continued to be offered regularly via the same outlets (eBay, delcamp, and Middle East stamp dealers). As we consider our duty to warn philatelists and highlight the source behind these fabricate material, we investigated about the source and turned out with fruitful cooperation of dealers and philatelists that sole source of such material is Arif Balgamwala of Pakistan who is in collaboration with Shahid Zaki of Pakistan. Shahid is the one who is expert in such fabrication while Airf is the one who is promoting forgery in the philatelic market, when we faced him he claims that he bought such material from deceased stamp dealer (just to mislead)! Original stamp is used on original covers with fabricated postmarks. In a single case reported a forged stamp was used along with original but canceled with forged postmark (there might be more around). Target was most of the postmarks used in different Emirates before unity, we understand they had touched other areas as well.








Fake Egyptian cancel of Tripoli on 2 Piastres yellow

fig 1

fig 2


Fig 1

Fig 2

Fig 3

Lately I have been able to observe a fake cancel very interesting, imitating the postmark used by the Egyptian Post Office in Tripoli. In fact I did not know hitherto forgery postmarks imitating those that the Egyptian Postal Administration had distributed to offices opened in 1870 on the Syrian coast.
For those who have had the goodness to buy and read my modest catalog of “The Foreign Post Offices Cancels In Lebanon 1845-1914”, in the section dedicated to Egyptian offices, I affirmed that their period of operation was quite short: from late June 1870 to February 1872. The causes of their closure can be attributed respectively to the cost of the service too expensive, the competition with the most experienced postal administrations of Austria, France and Russia, and not least the pressure made by the Ottoman government which Egypt was nominally a vassal and to which was officially prohibited the prerogative of postal transport between locality of the Sublime Porte Empire. I do not hide that when I saw a stamp of 2 Piastres 1872 issue in the sales catalog of a famous auction house in Switzerland, I had a moment of “panic”, due to the fact that the date of postmark was 1876 (fig 1). This in open disagreement with what I wrote in the catalog. But through a more analysis …. I had a sigh of relief. Compared with a specimen of 5 Piastres 1872 issue, that the lamented Peter Smith had sold long ago (fig 2) and a 1 Piastre 1867 issue, found on the market (fig 3), I could observe the blatant differences between the two postmarks that are clearly visible even to the less experienced.
I really hope that the unwary buyer does not expose them in an exhibition, would lose many valuable points.


Anti-Tuberculosis seal stamps on Lebanese covers

Tuberculosis (TB) has been known to mankind since ancient times. Earlier this disease has been called by numerous names including consumption (because of the severe weight loss and the way the infection appeared to “consume” the patient), phthisis pulmonaris and the white plague (because of the extreme pallor seen among those infected). In the 19th century, Tuberculosis became epidemic in Europe where annual mortality rates were around 1,000 per 100,000 per year ! In the end of the 19th century, it was believed that the mountain fresh air and over-feeding in an establishment more like a luxury hotel than a hospital would strengthen the patient. That’s why sanatoriums establishments appeared. Treatment in sanatoriums quickly spread throughout Europe and America. Until the advent of chemotherapy, sanatoriums were the best alternative to treatment, especially in the beginning stages of the disease.
TB Charity Seals are Charity Seals which were issued to support sanatoriums, or for anti-tuberculosis campaigns. The use of TB Charity Seals began in Denmark and other Scandinavian countries beginning in 1904. In the United States, the Red Cross issued seals to fund anti-tuberculosis campaigns and sanatoriums beginning in 1907. They were soon issued by various societies to support anti-TB campaigns in states, counties, and for public and private hospitals and sanatariums. These TB-seals where also called Christhmas seals because they where sold around Christmas time, a favorable period for generosity and compassion.

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Journée mondiale de la santé

2 Journée mondiale de la santé      1


The World Health Day is one of the world organization of health initiatives, founded in 1948. It is an event celebrated in all the member country where everyone, from the leaders to the general public is invited to consider a health problem that has consequences worldwide. Lebanon joined WHO January 19, 1949
At the first World Health Assembly in July 1948, it was decided that the Executive Board will be invited to recommend the establishment of a World Health Day. It was suggested to choose July 22 to commemorate the signing (22/7/1946) of the Constitution of the World Health Organization by 61 nations. WHA1.134 – July 1948 -13.308
Thus Lebanon will issue a commemorative stamp on 07/22/1949 for the day celebrating both the World Health Day and his first year in the WHO. This seal will be find on both domestic and international mail from Beirut, as well on covers transiting through the capital.

Fig 1– Commercial mail posted on 07/22/1949 in Beirut, heading to Switzerland with the red WHO Cancel

Fig 2– Internal mail posted on 22/07/1949, from Beirut to Tripoli with the red WHO commemorative cancel

Note that the mail posted at that time was often accompanied by the stamp tax for Palestine refugees



Fig 3 and 4 – Back of the two letters shown in Fig 1 and Fig 2


Fig 5 and 6 – Outgoing airmail from Beirut to Greece with WHO commemorative cancel on Back. 


Fig. 7 – International mail posted in Beirut on 22/7/1949, heading to the United States with the red commemorative cancel and stamp tax for Palestine Refugees on front of the cover


Fig. 8 and 9 – Mail posted on 18/7/1949 in Jerusalem, passing through Amman, cancelled with WHO commemorative stamp upon arrival in Beirut, the 07/22/1949

WHOFig10 WHOFig11
Fig.10 and 11 – Mail from Ramallah posted on 07/18/1949, transiting through Beirut and collecting WHO commemorative stamp on back. Note the AV2 cancel found on letters from Palestinian village (Heifetz AV2 Type 10)


Fig 12 – Philatelic cover with WHO cancel on a stamp issued for the third UNESCO Congress in 1948 that took place in Beirut.

Fig 13 – Lebanese report to the WHO assembly in 1949


«Considering that the World Health Assembly decided that the Organization must grant its patronage to the celebration by all Member States of World Health Day, on the date of July 22 of each year
Considering that schools and other educational institutions in every country, major propaganda tools, should be observing this day
Considering that in many countries, most schools are closed on July 22 and cannot therefore fulfill this mission
Considering that the choice of April the 7th, referring to the official entry into force of the constitution of WHO in 1948, offers a solution wich would allow to avoid these disadvantages,
The second World Health Assembly, decided to fix for 1950 and for subsequent years, the “World Health Day” on April 7 in order to be celebrated appropriately by all Member States.
WHA2.35 – June 1949 21:27»

Translation in English of fig 13

Because of this ratification, the celebration of the «Health  World day»  will henceforth be made on April 7th of each year and this from 1950. That became a tradition. Unfortunately our postal administration will not renew any more the experiment and the commemorative cancel of 1949 will remain a unique experience.


Fig.14 –  Beware of Hypertension

However in 1978, in full civil war, the post office will emit a stamp to commemorate the World Health day. The topic this year being prevention of Hypertension. There are two type of prevention, primary and secondary. Primary is to take appropriate measures to prevent the disease from happening the first place. The steps to be taken by Lebanese now a days is maintenance of a healthy lifestyle and avoiding bad news by keeping their local radio and TV shut  off !!! Secondary prevention means the disease cannot be prevented from happening in the first place and the controle of the disease is related to routine checkups in order to detect the disease in the earliest stage.