Lebanese in Ukraine Are Urging The Government to Help Them

FRONTERA|Mohamed Azakir,Reuters

The Lebanese community in Ukraine addressed an open letter to the Lebanese President, the government, the Parliament, the Minister of Information, the Lebanese ambassador to Ukraine, and the Lebanese media, asking for help:

“The Follow-up Committee for Students and Residents, which includes all students studying in Ukraine and Lebanese families who have come to Ukraine to visit their relatives or for tourism, addresses this message to the Lebanese state, asking all heads and officials to support them in these difficult situations they are going through as a result of the outbreak of the Coronavirus (COVID-19).”

The letter went on to explain the harsh situation in which our people in Ukraine have been, as many got stranded and/or cut off from their homeland and resources with no means to keep going.

“The situation of Lebanese students and the capabilities of Lebanese individuals and families in Ukraine have become difficult,” the letter stressed.

“They suffer from harsh living conditions, and the situation is getting worse day after day due to the depletion of their purchasing capabilities, and the restriction of financial transfers from Lebanon,” the letter explained.

“These conditions and detaining them [from returning home] will destroy their mental health, and the state had duties to protect its citizens,” they said in their letter, pointing out as an example that “Ukraine evacuated about 80 thousand of its citizens from foreign countries and guaranteed their return to Ukraine at its expense.”

The Lebanese community is urging the state and the concerned authorities to evacuate them back home, asking them to “reconsider their unjust decision against its citizens to stop the trips to Lebanon.”

They are calling on them to respond to their demands and “accelerate quick practical steps” to evacuate them, stressing on the humanitarian aspect of their situation, as they fear it is “turning into a catastrophe.”

They committed in their letter that they will stay in quarantine upon arriving in Lebanon. Aside from its health impact, this pandemic has brought disastrous conditions on many who were left stranded in foreign countries.

The Lebanese students, who mostly – if not totally – rely on the financial support of their parents’ bank accounts in Lebanon are even getting it worse due to the banks’ capital control measures.

Our students in Italy are also enduring that dramatic situation, living on $6 a week and on donations by the Call Crisis that was formed by the Lebanese diaspora.

The Ambassador of Lebanon to Italy Mira Daher has also urged recently Lebanon’s government, with several letters as reported, to evacuate the Lebanese students who were conducting courses in Italy and couldn’t come back home at the closure of Beirut’s airport.

As of date, no such measures of evacuation have been reported.

Get the latest news and updates about the coronavirus outbreak in Lebanon along with a live monitor of cases in Lebanon as well as resources and information to help you guide the outbreak on our dedicated coronavirus page.