Qabalan: We Condemn the Call for Naturalizing Syrian Refugees


Higher Islamic Shiite Council chief Sheikh Abdul Amir Qabalan on Thursday condemned calls for “naturalizing” Palestinian and Syrian refugees in Lebanon.

“We condemn every call and effort to naturalize the Palestinians and we also deplore the call for naturalizing Syrian refugees,” said Qabalan in a statement marking the first of Muharram, in an apparent reference to recent remarks by U.S. President Donald Trump.

“Arab and Muslim leaders must exert efforts to secure their return to their homeland in Syria, which has started to regain its peace and stability after the great achievements that have been made by the Syrian army and its allies, who have ousted takfiri gangs from Syria and Lebanon,” the top Shiite cleric added.

He also called on Arab and Muslim leaders to “support Palestine and its people, halt the bloodshed in Yemen and do justice to Bahrain's people.”

Trump's suggestion that refugees be resettled closer to home instead of brought to the United States has angered many in Lebanon, a tiny country hosting more than 1.5 million refugees.

Prime Minister Saad Hariri said "everyone knows Lebanon rejects resettling Palestinians or any other nationalities."

The country of just 4 million is officially hosting more than 1 million Syrian refugees and some 500,000 Palestinians. The real numbers are likely higher as many don't register with the U.N.

Lawmakers on Wednesday demanded a formal response to Trump.

Speaker Nabih Berri said it was no "joking matter," and invoked Lebanon's Constitution, which he said rejects resettlement.

Trump told the U.N. Tuesday that for the cost of resettling one refugee in the U.S., Washington could assist 10 closer to home.

Comments 7
Thumb justin 21 September 2017, 17:08

المواطنون ضحايا شعبوية الاعلام وعدم الدقة في ترجمة خطاب ترامب. وقد تُرجم في إحدى فقراته على الشكل التالي : "يجب إعادة توطين اللاجئين في الدول الأقرب لهم". في حين أن الدقة تقتضي نشر النص باللغة الانكليزية للتأكد بأن ترامب لم يقل ذلك إنما قال ما حرفيته:

billions of dollars in helping to support this effort. We seek an approach to refugee resettlement that is designed to help these horribly treated people, and which enables their eventual return to their home countries to be part of the rebuilding process.
For the cost of resettling one refugee in the United States, we can assist more than 10 in their home region. Out of the goodness of our hearts, we offer financial assistance to hosting countries in the region, and we support recent agreements of the G20 nations that will seek to host refugees as close to their home countries as possible. This is the safe, responsible and humanitarian approach."

Thumb galaxy 22 September 2017, 12:06

and we also condemn you for bringing in shia from iran, yemen, bahrain and iraq and for having the huthi buried on Lebanese soil.

Thumb s.o.s 21 September 2017, 20:13

We naturalized you, carpet cleaners. Why not them? I mean Syrians are superior to Yemenites in terms of culture history and civilization!

Thumb s.o.s 21 September 2017, 21:20

Qabalan is a pure Arabian Peninsula name yet here he is holding our prestigious passport. So I’m not saying that Syrians or Palestinians should also get the same opportunity Houthians were given, because obviously it was a clear mistake, but from a geographic standpoint, they make more sense that yemenite or Iraqis such as Qabalan, Qassem, or Bazzi.

Thumb s.o.s 21 September 2017, 21:35

***They make more sense than yemenites or Iraqis.

Thumb janoubi 22 September 2017, 11:19

and who told this iranian someone wants to naturalize the Syrians?

Thumb janoubi 22 September 2017, 11:20

must be @the_roar mass reporting comments for deletion because it makes his empty life feels better.