Geagea Slams 'Big Deception Campaign' on Syrian Refugees


Lebanese Forces leader Samir Geagea on Wednesday blasted State Minister for Refugee Affairs Saleh al-Gharib's visit to Syria as he lashed out at what he called a “big deception campaign.”

“The two discouraging signals represented in Minister Saleh al-Gharib's visit to Syria and Minister Elias Bou Saab's stance at the Munich conference can only spark concern over the future of the government's work,” Geagea said in an interview with the Central News Agency.

“There is a big deception campaign that is taking place at the expense of the Syrian refugees cause,” the LF leader added, wondering “how the head of a regime that has displaced its people and is pressing on with its punitive and intimidatory policies could secure the refugees' return.”

He added: “All signals clearly indicate that the refugees do not want to return due to Assad's presence at the head of the regime, so how can communication with him become a way to return the refugees? Such an approach cannot convince any reasonable person and is a mere attempt at deviating attention and a trick that can no longer deceive the Lebanese.”

“It is only a window that they are trying to open to drag Lebanon into normalization with Syria,” Geagea went on to say, lauding Prime Minister Saad Hariri's decision to “label al-Gharib's visit as a personal one.”

Turning to Bou Saab's stance, the LF leader described it as “unacceptable.”

“What he said does not reflect the stance of the government, which has not convened yet to specify its stance,” Geagea added.

“Who has tasked him with announcing Lebanon's stance on the safe zone in Syria?” he wondered.

Comments 3
Thumb justice 20 February 2019, 19:48

“Who has tasked him with announcing Lebanon's stance on the safe zone in Syria?” Geagea wondered.

Bou Saab is FPM and he takes his orders from Aoun. That is who tasked him!

Thumb canadianleb 20 February 2019, 21:38

So what is the solution? keep the Syrians in Lebanon? I hate to say it but Assad isn't going anywhere anytime soon, so what is Lebanon to do? Basically Lebanon is dammed if they talk to the Syrian Government and dammed if they don't.

Thumb canadianleb 21 February 2019, 00:10

Interesting, I am not sure what you mean by"make demands as Jordan and Turkey have both done through the UN to agree to a plan that pays for the migrants and a schedule for repatriation" I am not aware of such a plan do you have any details or where this can be looked at? or what is the timeline? reality dictates that as long as the Syrians are in Lebanon the UN pays the government so the politicians are benefiting while ordinary people are suffering...