Established by Fathi Ibrahim Bayoud 2005 - Homs

Arsal refugees say no pressure from UNHCR for returning home

Syrian Refugees | 2018-06-10 06:31:51
Arsal refugees say no pressure from UNHCR for returning home
(Zaman Al Wasl)- Key refugee councils in the Lebanese border town of Arsal assured that UNHCR had never discouraged them from returning, calling on the Lebanese government and the United Nations’ refugee agency to find common ground over the crisis as more than 60,000 Syrians live in Arsal.  

Saturday’s statement came after the Lebanon’s Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil had directed authorities to freeze all residency applications submitted by UNHCR, according to Reuters.

UNHCR officials said Lebanon's government had not yet formally notified it of the step.

Lebanon hosts more than a million Syrian refugees who constitute more than a quarter of its population and says their presence has strained public services and suppressed economic growth.

As Syrian forces and their allies retake more territory, Lebanon's president and other top politicians have increasingly called for refugees to return to "secure areas".

Syrian refugees have fears of military conscription, security problems and poor accommodation.

tens of refugees told Zaman al-Wasl that they would like to staty in Lebanon.

Lebanon's government is operating on a caretaker basis because prime minister designate Saad al-Hariri has not yet formed a government since parliamentary elections on May 6.

In an emailed statement, Bassil told Reuters that he would consider taking further measures against the agency.

On Thursday the mayor of Arsal said around 3,000 of them were expected to go back from Arsal to Syria in the coming week.

Zaman Al Wasl
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