UN / LEBANON REFUGEES

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05-May-2017 00:02:24
UN humanitarian coordinator for Lebanon Philippe Lazzarini said signs of “hospitality fatigue” were emerging in the country after showing the world what hospitality and solidarity “is all about” in hosting Syrian refugees. UNIFEED

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STORY: UN / LEBANON REFUGEES
TRT: 02:24
SOURCE: UNIFEED
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DATELINE: 05 MAY 2017, NEW YORK CITY

SHOTLIST:

FILE - NEW YORK CITY

1. Wide shot, UNHQ exterior

05 MAY 2017, NEW YORK CITY

2. Wide shot, press room
3. SOUNDBITE (English) Philippe Lazzarini, Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for Lebanon, United Nations:
“Lebanon, I do believe, has shown to the international community what hospitality and what solidarity is all about. At the very beginning of the crisis, host communities have opened their doors, their schools, their health centres, but seven years into this crisis, I mean we see more and more, I would say signs or emergence of what I would call a hospitality fatigue.”
4. Med shot, journalist asking question
5. SOUNDBITE (English) Philippe Lazzarini, Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for Lebanon, United Nations:
“The response in the country has evolved over the past seven years. It started by purely refugee focused response to broaden it to a response to the host communities, supporting municipalities, supporting a number of infrastructure; and today the call is to say ‘well this is not enough anymore. With this we can hardly slow down further deterioration. What is really required is a more macroeconomic approach.”
6. Med shot, journalist asking question
7. SOUNDBITE (English) Philippe Lazzarini, Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for Lebanon, United Nations:
“The refugees will go back in country the day they feel confident enough to go to their place of origin. Now, I do not think that talking about a safe zone will be enough to convince a refugee and his family to go back to their place of origin. The question also after that is, where is the safe zone? Does it cover the place where the people currently living in Lebanon are coming from?”
8. Wide shot, Lazzarini and UN spokesperson at dais
9. SOUNDBITE (English) Philippe Lazzarini, Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator for Lebanon, United Nations:
“The Prime Minister and the Government have initiated a discussion about how to revitalize the economy based on the observation that if we continue the way we have handled the crisis, there is a risk in the future of implosion. And this is the reason why there have been a call about more needs to be done.”
10. Zoom out, Lazzarini and UN spokesperson at dais

STORYLINE:

UN humanitarian coordinator for Lebanon Philippe Lazzarini said signs of “hospitality fatigue” were emerging in the country after showing the world what hospitality and solidarity “is all about” in hosting Syrian refugees.

Speaking to reporters in New York today (05 May), Lazzarini said Lebanon was hosting the highest number of refugees per capita in the region and creating a large demographic and socio-economic burden. He said many Lebanese people acknowledged that a political solution would not happen tomorrow thus raising anxiety about Syrian refugees' presence and their future in the country.

The humanitarian coordinator said the response in the country had “evolved” over the past seven years but the plan currently in place was hardly enough to “slow down further deterioration.” Lazzarini said poverty had doubled in the country since 2014 with 80 to 90 percent of Syrian refugees living under the poverty line. He said unemployment was skyrocketing in the country with some half a million youth with no employment opportunities, and the political situation in the country was full of uncertainties. He stressed that focusing on just the needs of the refugees or theír host communities was “not enough anymore” calling for a “macroeconomic” approach. Lazzarini said what the country needed was more investment ambitions to create more jobs and modernize the infrastructure. He added that this could only led by public institutions at the beginning and to be successful the Lebanese Government would have to agree on the priority investments.

Asked about the possible creation of safe zones in Syria and their effects on refugees living in Lebanon, Lazzarini said talk on the issue would not “be enough to convince a refugee and his family to go back to their place of origin.” He said refugees would return when they felt “confident” and safe to return to their homes.
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