Al-Rahi Urges Axing Budget Article Granting Residence Permits to Foreigners


Maronite Patriarch Beshara al-Rahi on Sunday reiterated his warning over a state budget article granting residence permits to Arabs and foreigners who buy apartments in Lebanon.

“The Lebanese remain concerned over the impact of Article 49 of the state budget which grants a residence permit to every Arab or foreigner who buys an apartment in Lebanon,” al-Rahi said in his Sunday Mass sermon.

“He and his wife and minor children would benefit from this residence permit and the subsequent rights, which all would come at the expense of the Lebanese people,” the patriarch cautioned.

He called for “abolishing this article and amending and suspending the foreign ownership law,” noting that the numbers of Arabs and foreigners “have currently exceeded half of Lebanon's people.”

“The current situations do not allow granting any residence permits, citizenship or naturalization,” the patriarch warned.

Comments 14
Thumb 15 April 2018, 14:22

Double standards... this specific Patriarch isn't straight in his boots!

Thumb s.o.s 15 April 2018, 19:10

What an utterly sectarian Prince of the Church, he's nothing like Pope Francis.

Thumb kanaanljdid 15 April 2018, 19:14

So 20 years after they came, they all became Lebanese, while they are not Arabs. Palestinians have been in Lebanon for 70 years, speak Arabic, but are not granted citizenship. Something is wrong, there is some racism towards non-christians in this country.

Missing womendoc 15 April 2018, 20:40

After reading all the comments on this matter full of racism, fanaticism, and hatred, partition or federalism will be the only way to move forward.

Thumb s.o.s 15 April 2018, 21:34

WD, Ra3i messed up by meddling directly with politics, he should instead refer his concerns to the elected politicians. People like him are the problem.
Federalism could be the answer, and a better and more important one is birth control.

Thumb warrior 15 April 2018, 23:25

Why is this clown involved in politics?

Missing cimitero 15 April 2018, 23:47

The circus left town?

Missing cimitero 15 April 2018, 23:46

Addressing a Syrian delegation from the coastal city of Tartous that visited him in Bkirki, al-Rahi said: “.. we are one people in two neighboring countries.” 27 December 2011

Thumb liberty 15 April 2018, 23:52


what is it that you agree with? that the Armenians are Lebanese? A group that still calls itself 'Armenians' in both parliament and government?

Apart from the language used above, I do agree the Armenians were naturalized only because they were Christians. Some Palestinians were also naturalized but the majority of them were also Christians.

Thumb thepatriot 16 April 2018, 00:53

A great law! That means every refugee, Iranian, Palestinian, Scum of the earth that has a rich sponsor or state behind him will be able to stay forever in the Land of the Cedar... brilliant... brilliant law... tfeh!

Thumb s.o.s 16 April 2018, 01:38

Lebanon can't accommodate 6 or 7 million people indefinitely regardless of their sect. The country is already heavily overpopulated, water / power are already insufficient . However, a smart move would be to set a high barrier to entry like by associating a permanent residency or citizenship to a serious investment of lets say a million dollars minimum in real estate or business. That's what some EU nations are already doing.

Thumb whyaskwhy 16 April 2018, 23:32

SOS the idea of setting standards is great, remember however were talking Lebanon here and how long do we think a new law will stand before the MP's start charging illegals people for Citizenship's? As a matter of business sense they would love it as it gives them yet another crooked way of milking the coffers of the nation.

Thumb enterprise 16 April 2018, 02:38

Amazing how the Lebanese emigrate to countries all over the world, obtain permanent residencies, acquire property and citizenship yet they are both narrow minded and sectarian when it comes to foreigners having the same rights and privileges in Lebanon.

The point to be made here is people like Al Rahi would not be objecting if he believes those seeking residency in Lebanon are Christians.

Thumb kanaanljdid 16 April 2018, 10:53

Well said enterprise. There should be reciprocity. Why does a Frenchman can't have basic rights in Lebanon while a Lebanese has full rights in France ?