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Lebanon's Hariri, Arslan Stress Need to Finalize Issue of Internally Displaced - ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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Beirut – Lebanon’s Prime Minister Saad Hariri met on Tuesday with Minister for Displaced Talal Arslan to address the means to finalize the issue of the internally displaced people in Mount Lebanon and the formation of a working group to study the pending cases.

In remarks following the meeting, Arslan said: “We discussed the issue of the displaced, especially since the Mountain is the cornerstone of the stability of the country.”

He noted however that the way the state is dealing with this issue “is unacceptable”.

“My duty and the duty of the state is to give people their rights. I have full confidence in Hariri, who cares about the rights of the people, because the subject needs to be treated in all of its details,” he added.

Arslan continued: “We cannot distinguish between the residents of the villages, regardless of their sects. The file of the displaced should be treated as the file of the Lebanese state with all of its components. We must pay attention to the issue of the migration of residents from villages to cities due to the lack of development at all levels.”

“It is embarrassing that 27 years after the end of the war, we continue to form governments that include a ministry for displaced affairs,” he remarked.

He added that he agreed with Hariri to hold a meeting to discuss all the details of the file and form a working group for this purpose “to see what can be done to give people their rights”.

Also on Tuesday, the prime minister received at the Grand Serail Russian Ambassador to Lebanon Alexander Zasypkin.

In remarks following the meeting, the Russian ambassador said: “I delivered to Hariri an official invitation from Russian Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev to visit Moscow. The date will be set soon. We also discussed ways to develop bilateral relations, political dialogue as well as economic, cultural and military cooperation between the two countries.”