Beirut – Lebanon’s State Minister for Affairs of the Displaced Moueen al-Merehbi declared that his country has offered more aid to Syrian refugees than donor countries.
He said that Lebanon gave 18 billion dollars to the displaced as opposed to the 8 billion offered by donor countries.
The minister made his remarks while touring a number of southern regions that are hosting refugees. He was accompanied by United Nations Resident Coordinator and Humanitarian Coordinator Philippe Lazzarini and Director of the Economic and Social Fund for Development Haitham Omar.
Merehbi explained that the Lebanese government is tackling the case of refugees through the UN, adding: “Even if we support their return to their homeland, we cannot do so on our own and violate international community norms and refugee principles.”
“The municipality is like a miniature government that has absolute authorities,” said Merehbi, suggesting that more pressure be exerted on concerned ministers.
“We are all in the same boat. If the Lebanese are well, then everyone else in the land will be well,” he declared.
For his part, Lazzarini thanked Lebanon for hosting the Syrian refugees, vowing to work, despite all international difficulties that are drying up the aid, to provide what is needed for the country.