Refugees in a building under construction they have been using as a shelter in southern Lebanon, on March 17, 2020, after Lebanon urged people to stay at home for two weeks to stem a novel coronavirus outbreak. © 2020 Mahmoud Zayyat/AFP via Getty Images
Palestinian refugee Adnan AlMaghrebi, displaced from Yarmouk Camp in Damascus to AlBadawi camp, north of Lebanon, has appealed to the international humanitarian institutions to help him secure surgery fees.
Adnan is in need of an urgent head surgery to remove a pituitary tumor, which costs 2,600 USD. UNRWA pledged to cover 40% of the sum and donors pledged to shell out the rest of the sum. However, the hospital administration said Adnan should pay the entire sum on claims that it has not struck a contract with UNRWA. The latter said it will pay its share only after it receives the hospital bill, leaving Adnan in distress.
UNRWA has identified Palestinian refugees in Lebanon as one of the most marginalized and poorest communities in the region.
In its 2020 Syria crisis emergency appeal, UNRWA said that Palestinian refugees 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 the refugees’ already dire living conditions.
The refugees’ 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 The lack of a valid legal status, often coupled with outdated civil registration documents, results in severely restricted freedom of movement in Lebanon due to fear of arrest, detention or forced deportation.