Krahenbuhl: “I think it’s very important to address emergencies when they happen, but it’s very important to not let communities slide into oblivion and simply disappear.” (AP Photo/Hussein Malla)
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This year will be another financial battle for the U.N. Relief and Works Agency to continue operations for Palestinian refugees in Lebanon, with "competing pressures" in the wake of regional emergencies in Iraq, Syria and Gaza, a top agency official said."UNRWA is an agency which stands for something important, it stands for service delivery and it stands for respective rights for a community that has been wronged for many years".During his visit, Krahenbuhl toured the Nahr al-Bared refugee camp, where reconstruction efforts have been delayed and mired by financial difficulties ever since Palestinians were displaced by deadly clashes in May 2007 .Up until then, Palestinian refugees in Syria did not rely on UNRWA services a great deal, having certain freedoms under the Assad regime not enjoyed by Palestinians elsewhere in the region, including the right to work and participate in the host community.The issue of strict entry restrictions for Palestinian refugees from Syria, put in place by General Security in August 2013, was a key point raised by Krahenbuhl during discussions with top Lebanese officials, including Prime Minister Tammam Salam, Interior Minister Nouhad Machnouk and Speaker Nabih Berri.
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