The United Nations refugee chief called today on the international community to step-up its efforts to ease the plight of Syrian refugees who continue to live in harsh conditions in Syria’s neighboring countries.
The UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), António Guterres, made his comments, while in Debane, close to the southern city of Ghaziye, where he was visiting some of the 1.2 million Syrians who have sought refuge in Lebanon.
“We cannot accept that the Syrian people will go on living in these absolutely tragic circumstances, and we cannot accept that countries like Lebanon and Jordan are facing such a dramatic challenge to their own economies and to their own stability,” he said.
While noting the increasing number of Syrian refugees who risk their lives to cross the sea to Southern Europe, Guterres said that “Syrians are more and more risking their lives to have access to European territories. But for all those in need of protection it is very important to increase the number of resettlement opportunities, humanitarian admission opportunities, to have a more flexible visa policy, to have enhanced family reunification programs, and again I repeat to have an effective mechanism to rescue people at sea in the central Mediterranean.”
Vice-president of the Syrian Coalition Hisham Marwa said earlier that “the Assad regime has been committing unspeakable crimes over the past four years humanity, and has manufactured and supported terrorist groups in Syria and the region.
Marwa calls on world leaders to respond more effectively to the plight of Syrian refugees caused by the Assad regime, which has gone beyond killing civilians en masse over the past four years to manufacturing and sponsoring terrorist groups in an attempt to circumvent the demands of the revolution and portray it as a terrorist movement. (Source: Coalition + Al Jazeera)