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Syrian refugees making crisis intolerable: Bassil

Bassil and German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier during a joint news conference at the Foreign Ministry in Berlin, Germany, Tuesday, May 6, 2014.(AP Photo/Michael Sohn)

BEIRUT: The over 1 million Syrian refugees in Lebanon are making the crisis intolerable, Foreign Minister Gebran Bassil said Tuesday while stressing the need to find a practical solution for displacement.

“The Syrian refugee issue is unacceptable and we must find feasible solutions,” Bassil said following talks in Berlin with German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier.

He also stressed the need to work on returning the refugees to Syria.

“Aid to refugees is not only restricted to direct assistance, but finding suitable conditions to return them to their homeland,” Bassil said.

His remarks were made at a joint news conference with his German counterpart.

Officials in Lebanon say more than 1.3 million Syrians have sought shelter in Lebanon since the conflict in Syria began in March 2011.

Steinmeier acknowledged the “great pressure” on Lebanon as Syrians continue to flee in great numbers.

“Germany is helping a little in removing the burden on Lebanon," Steinmeier said.

He said he would visit Beirut and the region soon to address the refugee crisis.

 

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