President of the Republic, General Michel Aoun, on Friday asked of the Executive Director of the United Nations Children’s Fund (UNICEF), Ms. Henrietta Fore, to swiftly address the simmering issue of Syrians refugees in Lebanon “in a bid to alleviate their sufferings, and simultaneously facilitate their gradual return to safe zones in Syria.”
“The Syrian children who were born in Lebanon since the beginning of the Syrian war back in 2011 are now seven years old; they are living in difficult health, social, and educational conditions, despite the care that Lebanon provides to them and their families. The Lebanese state has suffered heavy losses in educational and social infrastructure, which has negatively affected state allocations in service of Lebanese children, not to mention the post-graduation sufferings of the Lebanese youth who suffer unemployment due to the presence of a high number of Syrian workers in the Lebanese job market,” Aoun told Fore.
Moreover, the President lauded the existing cooperation between UNICEF and the Lebanese authorities in the areas of children’s rights, health care, and education.
“The United Nations and its organizations should take into account the dangers that might affect neighboring countries when addressing the crises of other countries,” Aoun added, hoping that UNICEF will participate in the international conference in Brussels to discuss the issue of Syrian refugees and their host countries.
In turn, UNICEF’s Fore confirmed that the Lebanese efforts hosting Syrian refugees were highly valued by UNICEF.
“The Lebanese are worthy of international support. UNICEF will be a strong voice in support of Lebanon and will make sure to defend its rights,” Fore said as vowing support to Lebanon at Brussels donor conference.
Furthermore, she stressed the importance of ongoing cooperation with the Lebanese government, especially seeking to provide employment opportunities for Lebanese youth, as well as in the areas of health care and sanitation.
On another level, and marking teacher’s day, President Aoun congratulated teachers via twitter telling them: “In maintaining balance between your profession and your mission, lies your success.”