News ID: 109732
Publish Date : 04 December 2022 - 21:55

UN Urges More Support for Vulnerable Lebanese, Syrian Refugees

BEIRUT (Xinhua) – The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees Filippo Grandi has appealed for sustained international support to vulnerable Lebanese and refugees in Lebanon.
“Now, more than ever, we must not decrease the support that is provided to Lebanon, both to support Lebanese in need and the hundreds of thousands of refugees that they have generously hosted for so many years,” Grandi, who was finishing a three-day visit to Lebanon, was quoted by a UN statement as saying.
Grandi pledged to continue working towards finding long-term solutions for Syrian refugees in Lebanon and in the region, said the statement, adding these solutions include resettlement of refugees to third countries and the voluntary, safe and dignified return of refugees to Syria.
According to the Lebanese government, about 1.5 million Syrian refugees are living in the country.
Lebanon has repeatedly called on the relevant international organizations to facilitate the repatriation of Syrian refugees to their country, in order to reduce the economic burden Lebanon bears in light of its staggering economic crisis.
Since late 2019, Lebanon has been mired in a deep financial crisis that has caused the Lebanese pound to lose around 90 percent of its value to the U.S. dollar and led its banking system to collapse, plunging the bulk of Lebanese into poverty.
The economic and financial crisis is mostly linked to the sanctions that the United States and its allies have imposed on Lebanon and foreign intervention in the Arab nation’s domestic affairs.
Early November, scores of Syrian refugees headed back to their homeland in the second convoy in less than two weeks from the Lebanese town of Arsal under the supervision of the Lebanese army and General Security, a move that could lead to the easing of inflation in crisis-hit Lebanon.
The repatriation from Syria to Lebanon that took place was voluntary. The move came after the security files of those who have applied for their return were completed.
According to the agency, around 330 Syrian refugees left from the eastern Bekaa Valley to Syria’s western Qalamoun region, which borders Lebanon.
The bordering region located in northeastern Lebanon includes Qalamoun and Arsal which witnessed some of the worst fighting of Syria’s 11-year conflict years ago, where Daesh terrorists were scattered in the Lebanon Mountains and the Syrian highlands.
Head of Lebanon’s Directorate of General Security, Major General Abbas Ibrahim, assured that “the return will be voluntary and free of charge, and we will not force any refugee to return, this is our principled stance, and it comes as part of an effort to reduce the burden on Lebanon.”
Ibrahim pointed out that 17 general security centers were distributed across Lebanon in order to organize the voluntary return of Syrian refugees.