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Lebanon and the displaced... terrifying statistics, exciting numbers and an existential threat!

Lebanon and the displaced... terrifying statistics,
exciting numbers and an existential threat!
Since the first spark of the Syrian revolution in 2011, the signs of displacement began to appear on the horizon inside Lebanese territory, and despite the objections of some, led by the Free Patriotic Movement, there were Lebanese voices from the political forces on the other side, pressuring the government to allow the displaced Syrians to enter Lebanon, considering that the matter would only take a few weeks and then these displaced people would return to their country again. BUT the reality of the matter took more than 13 years, and it still exists, and Lebanon is experiencing a state of terrifying economic suffocation, and it has been bearing the burden of the displaced Syrians throughout these years until the Lebanese Foreign Minister Abdullah Bou Habib revealed, at the Brussels Conference for the Displaced Syrians, which was held recently, that the cost of the Syrian displacement on Lebanon amounted to about 33 billion dollars over 11 years.
Surprisingly, although Lebanon did not sign the 1951 Refugee Convention, and was therefore considered a “transit country” rather than a country of asylum, Lebanon has become, less than three years after the start of the Syrian war, the “largest displacement country” in terms of the number of displaced Syrians residing on its soil, with their number reaching more than two million Syrians. Despite the enormity of the negative impacts on Lebanon’s economy due to the displaced, we find that with every Lebanese attempt or international conference that would discuss the return of displaced Syrians to their country, we find ambassadors of Western countries that support displaced Syrians sending messages of reproach to the Lebanese government, as it has begun to think of a radical solution to the displaced people, a situation which has exhausted Lebanon all these years. What is even stranger is that they asked the Lebanese Ministry of Education to teach the Lebanese program to Syrian students. Isn’t it better to teach them the Syrian program?! Isn’t that a burden on Lebanon, which has been bearing the burden of the displaced for all these years? Here we wonder: when Lebanon deals with displaced Syrians according to human rights, why did the Lebanese people, who are now living below the poverty line in the world, not deal with the same human rights?  
Therefore, we say to all the Western voices, especially the European ones, that refuse to discuss the situation of the displaced Syrians on Lebanon’s soil, are you satisfied with what is happening in Lebanon, from the unprecedented economic crisis? Isn’t it enough for Lebanon to bear the crisis of the displaced Syrians alone for all these years? Isn’t their homeland more deserving of them now, so that it can have mercy on Lebanon, which is experiencing one of its most serious economic and political crises in its modern history? Didn’t these people who reject the return of the displaced know that Lebanon receives an annual loan to buy wheat estimated at about 350 million dollars, more than 25% of which goes to the displaced Syrians? Lebanon has not closed its doors to any Arab and remains open to all Arabs, but the crisis is too big for Lebanon to address, whether economically, politically, or even socially. 
In conclusion, Lebanon has no solution to get out of its current crisis except after the return of the displaced Syrians to their country. Let everyone know that Lebanon alone is the one that determines its fate and takes the decisions it deems appropriate for it at the present time, because Lebanon alone is the one that bears the repercussions of its crises that have put it in a dangerous phase. We may not be exaggerating if we say that the crisis of the displaced has become a real existential threat to Lebanon and its identity.  
 Editor in Chief



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