Syrian refugee youths talk next to a clothesline at an unofficial camp for refugees in the village of Bar Elias in the Bekaa Valley central Lebanon on June 22, 2016. / AFP / JOSEPH EID
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A joint media campaign aimed at diffusing the rising tension between Syrian refugees and Lebanese host communities was launched Thursday by the Information Ministry and the United Nations under the slogan "I will Return to My Country and Invite You to Visit Me". The campaign – conceived by Information Minister Melhem Riachi – aims to initiate a constructive public debate over the presence of Syrian refugees in Lebanon through cooperation with news outlets, civil society activists, celebrities and social media influencers. Just over 1 million refugees are registered with UNHCR in Lebanon, but the government places the figure closer to 1.5 million.Around 300 refugees from the same area left to Syria after the events, amid calls from the Lebanese host community for all refugees to return to Syria.The campaign will then continue for another three months, according to the Information Ministry.
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