BEIRUT: Arab foreign ministers will hold an emergency meeting in Cairo next to week to address the growing number of Syrian refugees in Lebanon, the country’s National News Agency said Sunday.
“[Lebanon’s Foreign Minister Adnan] Mansour was informed Sunday that the Arab league has agreed to hold a meeting on the case of Syrian refugees in Lebanon,” the state-run news agency said.
The meeting, which will take place on Jan. 13, will address possible assistance to Lebanon by members of the Arab League, the NNA said.
According to the agency, Mansour said he would present in a couple of days a comprehensive report on the situation of the refugees in the country and their needs.
As part of a comprehensive plan to assist the refugees, Cabinet agreed Thursday to urge the Arab League and international organizations to hold extraordinary meetings to highlight the situation of the refugees.
Mansour requested the Arab League meeting earlier this week.
Lebanon’s government has repeatedly voiced the difficulties it faces in assisting those displaced by the violence in neighboring Syria.
According to the latest report by the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees on the case of the Syrian refugees in Lebanon, the total number of displaced who have registered with the agency stands at over 180,000.
The number of refugees entering Lebanon from Syria continues to increase.
Last week, more than 5,000 Syrian refugees registered with the United Nations Higher Commissioner for Refugees, the agency said Friday, bringing the total number of refugees receiving protection and assistance from the Lebanese government, NGOs and the UNHCR to over 180,100.
The majority, over 67,000, are registered in the north. Most are coming from the Syrian provinces of Aleppo, Homs, Idlib and Damascus.
Last week, 1,650 Syrian refugee children enrolled in Lebanese public schools, bringing the total number to 10,000 throughout the country.
This, says UNHCR, has been one of the biggest challenges of 2012.
Adequate shelter also remains one of the biggest challenges facing Syrian refugees.
So far, they have been living in rented units, with host families or shelters. But the need for more accommodation is needed to cope with the growing influx, the UNHCR said.