President Michel Aoun informed European Commission Vice-President Margaritis Schinas that Lebanon is no longer able to bear the burdens caused by the continued Syrian exodus to Lebanon.
Aoun called on the European Union to work to facilitate the refugees’ return to the safe Syrian areas.
In his statement, Aoun said: “Lebanon, which is taking measures to prevent illegal immigration from its lands, hopes to receive reciprocal treatment from the countries of the world, especially the European countries.”
Schinas also discussed the situation of Syrian refugees in Lebanon with Minister of Foreign Affairs Abdullah Bou Habib, as well as Lebanon’s attempts to address the crisis on economic, health, and social levels.
They also addressed the European Union’s concerns with illegal immigration, and both sides decided to maintain their collaboration and coordination in order to overcome common problems.
Later, Schinas met with Parliament Speaker Nabih Berri, with whom she addressed the overall situation in Lebanon and the region, as well as Lebanon’s relations with the E.U.
According to UNHCR, at the end of 2020, almost 866,000 Syrian refugees were registered within Lebanon.
Back in 2020, Russia and Syria held an International Conference on supporting the return of Syrian refugees.
Prior to the conference, Russian President Vladimir Putin stated that millions of Syrian refugees who had left their country’s civil war should begin going back home to help rebuild their country now that much of the Arab world welcomes relative stability.