UNRWA said that more than 61,000 Palestine Refugees in Lebanon live below the poverty line. Photo credit: OCHA
Representatives of the Palestinian refugee community in Lebanon’s AlBekaa region said the situation of Palestinian refugees in the Lebanese territories has taken a turn for the worse due to a variety of reasons, most notably the security turmoil and protection gaps.
This came during a meeting convened with Baalbek’s Mufti (Islamic jurist) Khaled AlMusleh to discuss the situation of displaced Palestinian refugees in Lebanon.
Representatives of the Palestinian refugee community from Syria underscored the exacerbated situation of Palestinian refugees across the tension-stricken Lebanese territories.
Nearly 8,700 Palestinian families who fled war-torn Syria to Lebanon continue to endure an abject situation due to their ambivalent legal status and dire socio-economic conditions in the country.
UNRWA has identified Palestinian refugees from Syria (PRS) in Lebanon as one of the most marginalized and poorest communities in the region.
In its 2020 Syria crisis emergency appeal, UNRWA said that PRS in Lebanon continue to face high vulnerability and marginalization, making them heavily reliant on UNRWA humanitarian support to cover their basic needs. The socio-economic hardships and unrest experienced by the country have compounded PRS’ already dire living conditions.
According to a survey conducted by the American University of Beirut in 2015, nearly 90 percent of the PRS population in Lebanon live in poverty, including 9 per cent who are in extreme poverty and unable to meet even their most essential food requirements.
PRS’s vulnerability is further compounded by their precarious legal status. The lack of a valid legal status, often coupled with outdated civil registration documents, results in severely restricted freedom of movement for some PRS in Lebanon due to fear of arrest, detention or forced deportation.