Naharnet

Kuwaiti Speaker in Beirut to Discuss Syrian Refugee Crisis

Kuwaiti Speaker Marzouq al-Ghanim is scheduled to visit Beirut on Friday to discuss with Lebanese officials the crisis of Syrian refugees, al-Liwaa newspaper reported.

During his two-day visit, al-Ghanim will hold talks with Speaker Nabih Berri and tour with Social Affairs Minister Rashid Derbas encampments of Syrian refugees.

Al-Ghanim, the envoy of Emir Sheikh Sabah al-Ahmed al-Sabah, is also expected to follow up the agreements reached during the donor conference held in Kuwait.

Al-Liwaa quoted a cabinet minister as saying that the Kuwaiti speaker's visit would be the first trip made by an Arab leader to Beirut since the expiry of President Michel Suleiman's term on May 25.

More than 1 million of Syrians are in Lebanon, leaving the country, home to 4.5 million people, struggling to cope with the massive influx of refugees.

Most of the displaced Syrians are living with relatives and small encampments spread in the country unlike Turkey and Jordan that have established official camps for them.

The Syrian conflict started in March 2011 as largely peaceful protests against President Bashar Assad's rule that deteriorated into civil war.

The fighting has uprooted 9 million people from their homes, with over 6 million Syrians seeking shelter in safer parts of the country and at least 2.7 million fleeing to neighboring countries.

G.K.

H.K.


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