Ali Meets Berri, Says 'There Can't be Visas between Lebanon, Syria'

إقرأ هذا الخبر بالعربية W460

Syrian Ambassador to Lebanon Ali Abdul Karim Ali denied Thursday that Syrians are now required to obtain visas to be able to enter Lebanon, reiterating his call for “coordination” between the two countries regarding border measures.

“There can't be visas between Syria and Lebanon,” Ali stressed after talks with Speaker Nabih Berri in Ain al-Tineh.

Lebanon had on Monday begun imposing the entry restrictions on Syrians, including those fleeing their country's civil war.

But Ali quoted Berri as saying that “this issue is merely a process to organize” the entry of Syrians.

“It must be in coordination between the two countries, and Syria has always stressed the need for understanding and coordination,” Ali added.

Berri and Social Affairs Minister Rashid Derbas had earlier stressed that the measures don't apply to Syrian refugees, noting that the procedures are limited to filling in a card that specifies the aim behind the visit of any Syrian and not a visa restriction.

“The measures don't involve Syrians who hold a refugee cards and are registered by the U.N. refugee agency” UNHCR, Derbas said in comments published in As Safir newspaper on Thursday.

He pointed out that Syrians only have to specify the aim behind their visit to Lebanon, denying that the new entry measures are racist.

“We want to reduce the influx of Syrians as the country can't handle anymore the social and economic burden imposed by the inflow,” Derbas told the daily.

Berri's visitors quoted him as saying in comments published in Ad Diyar newspaper that the entry requirements are not a visa restriction but rather “a process to organize the entry of Syrians.”

The speaker also stressed the importance of coordinating the matter with the Syrian state.

The entry restrictions are the first in the history of the two countries and come as Lebanon struggles to deal with more than 1.5 million Syrian refugees.

The influx has tested the country's limited resources, as well as the patience of its citizens, particularly as security has deteriorated.

For months, Lebanon's government has sounded the alarm, warning the international community that it could no longer deal with the influx.

Starting October, the government said Lebanon would stop accepting displaced Syrians, with exceptions on humanitarian grounds only.

A U.N. report said on Wednesday that Lebanon is hosting the largest number of new refugee arrivals between January and June 2014.

UNHCR said Lebanon shot up from being the 69th largest refugee-hosting country to second largest within just three and a half years.

Al-Joumhouria newspaper reported on Thursday that the new entry restrictions were highlighted during a meeting between head of the Lebanese-Syrian Higher Council Nasri Khoury and General Security chief Maj. Gen. Abbas Ibrahim.

Khoury reportedly conveyed to Ibrahim the Syrian government's stance on the measures.

The two officials also discussed the circumstances that prompted Lebanon to take such measures against Syrians.

Syria's ambassador Ali has said his country understood the new rules, but urged "coordination" with Damascus.

The new rules raise the prospect of Syrians being unable to flee the violence that has killed more than 200,000 people since March 2011.


Comments 16
Default-user-icon roukuz (Guest) 08 January 2015, 08:14

I hope you are being treated well as you lay in pieces and tranquility at your final destination dear flamethrower.... RIP

Thumb -phoenix1 08 January 2015, 14:08

Mr. Derbas, I am sorry to tell you, yes, they should be targeted and you know why? Because these Syrians aren't real refugees, they are slimy opportunists. They enter Lebanon as if this darn country was theirs, you'll see them everywhere with their plethora of luggage renting houses and apartments. They come and take our jobs, they open businesses and unfairly compete with us. They pay no taxes, they employ no Lebanese, they bring along their politics and hatred for us, they suck us dry, they are time bombs only waiting for the right time to use against us. Criminality is on the sharp rise, we Lebanese don't feel safe anymore, these people could be IS, Daach, Nusra, pro this anti that, who cares, let them all leave, and NOW!! And you Mr. Derbas stop being so apologetic!!

Thumb ex-fpm 08 January 2015, 18:20

استقبل رئيس مجلس النواب نبيه بري في عين التينة، السفير السوري في لبنان علي عبد الكريم علي الذي قال بعد اللقاء: “زيارة دولة الرئيس تأتي في بداية العام الجديد، وكانت معايدته واجبة. وقد تركز الحديث على المستجدات التي حدثت حول ما سمي بالاجراءات على الحدود. واكد دولته في هذا الخصوص ان سوريا ولبنان لا يمكن ان يكون بينهما تأشيرة دخول او فيزا وكل ما يجرى من حديث في هذا الاطار، وعبر عن ان هذا الامر هو اجراءات تنظيمية ويجب ان تكون بالتنسيق بين البلدين الامر الذي كانت سوريا على الدوام تقول بضرورة التفاهم والتنسيق.

Thumb thefool 08 January 2015, 20:02

There are Visa Requirements, and they are Not Enough. After 4 years of inflow of refugees, this is completely unacceptable! Syrian Refugees are killing Lebanon from the inside out. These Visa requirements are Late in their implementation; And Frankly Mr. Syrian Ambassador, nobody cares what you think, this unbeleivable inflow of Syrians is destroying us, and we don't care what you think, we know it on the ground.

Default-user-icon thephool (Guest) 08 January 2015, 22:07

your name suits you

Default-user-icon + oua nabka + (Guest) 08 January 2015, 20:24

let come to Lebanon but directly to the airport, seaport, bound for the gulf countries where they have enough money to cater for their humanitarian needs

Default-user-icon charlie (Guest) 08 January 2015, 20:53

there are turkey and Jordan that have borders with Syria just send them there

Thumb Tony.Farris 08 January 2015, 21:40

Those filth don't need visa, they enter using Hizbcocaine papers.

Default-user-icon charlie (Guest) 08 January 2015, 21:42

just send all refugees to the gulf countries where they got money to cater for their needs
god bless freedom of expression
and who ever is against freedom of expression is an extremist
je suis Charlie ,vive la liberte

Default-user-icon dezabro & demosso (Guest) 08 January 2015, 21:56

well said @defacto

Default-user-icon orio.fistula (Guest) 08 January 2015, 22:09

Lol@defacto x 3

Thumb Tony.Farris 08 January 2015, 22:39

Since all the refugee voted for ASSad, then they all should go back; they don't need a visa anymore.

Default-user-icon Disgusted (Guest) 09 January 2015, 10:56

I second the motion...

Missing helicopter 08 January 2015, 22:50

They will have to declare the reason for the visit on a card - dah

Default-user-icon Disgusted (Guest) 09 January 2015, 10:48

We don't want any single Syrian to cross our borders... we want to ship them out in truck loads... period... and you go with them..

Default-user-icon Disgusted (Guest) 09 January 2015, 10:52

I second your motion... excellent idea pal... and shipout all ali baba Nasrallah's followers and all the Syrians in lebanon... every single one...