BISSARIEH, Lebanon: British Ambassador to Lebanon Tom Fletcher visited the town of Bissarieh in south Lebanon Tuesday morning and spoke with community members about his country’s commitment to investing in long-term development projects.
The town of Bissarieh has around 6,000 Lebanese residents and is struggling to host more than 6,500 Syrian refugees now living there.
Accompanied by the head of UNDP in Lebanon, Luca Renda, Fletcher visited the fish market in nearby Sarafand that will be completely renovated by the U.N. agency with funds from Britain.
Fishermen expressed thanks that the ramshackle market, built around 15 years ago, would be fitted with a new roof and a cooling station to preserve fish for longer. The entire project, set to begin in the coming months, will cost around $170,000.
Sea-worn fishermen said that while they had not directly been affected by the presence of Syrian refugees, the town’s resources and public services were under immense strain. The new fish market will help them maintain their livelihoods and contribute more to south Lebanon’s economy, they said.
“I want to see long term development in communities like this that will give the foundations for them to come through this difficult period,” Fletcher said at the fish market.