News / Middle East

Syrian Refugees Seek Help in Lebanon

Syrian Refugees Seek Help in Lebanoni
|| 0:00:00
X
Scott Bobb
June 12, 2012
The conflict in Syria continues to displace thousands of people each week. As many as 100,000 have fled to neighboring countries. About 25,000 of that number are in Lebanon, where local residents struggle to help them survive. VOA's Scott Bobb reports from Lebanon's Bekaa Valley.
TEXT SIZE - +
Scott Bobb
SAADNAYEL, BEKAA VALLEY, Lebanon - The conflict in Syria continues to displace thousands of people each week.  As many as 100,000 have fled to neighboring countries.  About 25,000 of that number are in Lebanon, where local residents struggle to help them survive.  

Saadnayel, in Lebanon's Bekaa Valley, has a population of about 30,000 people. The small town is hosting more than 5,000 refugees from Syria's violence, now entering its 15th month.

Ziad al-Ali arrived two weeks ago. He covers his face because he fears for the safety of relatives back home. He says the Syrian army shelled his neighborhood in the central city of Homs. He came here because he heard there was help.

"They are giving us aid, rice, grain, lettuce, cooking oil, butter, toothpaste, some things for the home, bedding,” al-Ali said.

Mayor Khalil al-Chehimi says local residents initially provided most of the supplies and even money to the refugees. Since donor aid began arriving, his office is helping to assess needs and distribute aid.

“We are helping the United Nations to get to those people," he said. "So we are the connection to be close and make them [donors] understand what they [refugees] want, find a place to live and deliver the food or whatever they supply.”

A few kilometers away, 33-year-old Mariam, not her real name, lives with her four children and several other families in a shack provided by a local resident.  She says she fled Homs after gunmen killed her three brothers and several others.

“They raided all the houses. They took them [my brothers] out of the house with my cousins, neighbors, old men, children," she said. "They put them into a fruit truck and blew it up.”

Wissam Tarif is the local head of Avaaz, a human rights group that works with the refugees. He says Syrian forces have destroyed entire neighborhoods in opposition areas. The Syrian government says these attacks are by terrorists.

“We think there has been a pattern of taking people out of their places, out of their cities," Tarif said. "It's not a mistake. It's a state policy.”

Tarif says more than one million people have been displaced inside Syria, where there is little humanitarian aid.

Most Syrian refugees say they want to return home but will only do so if there is a change of government.

You May Like

Wikipedia Proves Useful for Tracking Flu

Technique gave better results than Center for Disease Control (CDC) and Google’s Flu Trends More

Turkish Law Gives Spy Agency Controversial Powers

Parliament approves legislation to bolster powers of intelligence service, which government claims is necessary to modernize and deal with new threats Turkey faces More

Video Face of American Farmer Changing

Average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population More

This forum has been closed.
Comments
     
There are no comments in this forum. Be first and add one

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Face of American Farmer is Changingi
X
Mike Osborne
April 18, 2014
The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Face of American Farmer is Changing

The average American farmer is now 58 years old, and farmers 65 and older are the fastest growing segment of the population. It’s a troubling trend signaling big changes ahead for American agriculture as aging farmers retire. Reporter Mike Osborne says a new report from the U.S. Census Bureau is suggesting what some of those changes might look like... and why they might not be so troubling.
Video

Video Donetsk Governor: Ukraine Military Assault 'Delicate But Necessary'

Around a dozen state buildings in eastern Ukraine remain in the hands of pro-Russian protesters who are demanding a referendum on self-rule. The governor of the whole Donetsk region is among those forced out by the protesters. He spoke to VOA's Henry Ridgwell from his temporary new office in Donetsk city.
Video

Video Drones May Soon Send Data From High Seas

Drones are usually associated with unmanned flying vehicles, but autonomous watercraft are also becoming useful tools for jobs ranging from scientific exploration to law enforcement to searching for a missing airliner in the Indian Ocean. VOA’s George Putic reports on sea-faring drones.
Video

Video New Earth-Size Planet Found

Not too big, not too small. Not too hot, not too cold. A newly discovered planet looks just right for life as we know it, according to an international group of astronomers. VOA’s Steve Baragona has more.
Video

Video Copts in Diaspora Worry About Future in Egypt

Around 10 percent of Egypt’s population belong to the Coptic faith, making them the largest Christian minority in the Middle East. But they have become targets of violence since the revolution three years ago. With elections scheduled for May and the struggle between the Egyptian military and Islamists continuing, many Copts abroad are deeply worried about the future of their ancient church. VOA religion correspondent Jerome Socolovsky visited a Coptic church outside Washington DC.
Video

Video Critics Say Venezuelan Protests Test Limits of Military's Support

During the two months of deadly anti-government protests that have rocked the oil-rich nation of Venezuela, President Nicolas Maduro has accused the opposition of trying to initiate a coup. Though a small number of military officers have been arrested for allegedly plotting against the government, VOA’s Brian Padden reports the leadership of the armed forces continues to support the president, at least for now.
Video

Video More Millenials Unplug to Embrace Board Games

A big new trend in the U.S. toy industry has more consumers switching off their high-tech gadgets to play with classic toys, like board games. This is especially true among the so-called millenial generation - those born in the 1980's and 90's. Elizabeth Lee has more from an unusual café in Los Angeles, where the new trend is popular and business is booming.
Video

Video Google Buys Drone Company

In its latest purchase of high-tech companies, Google has acquired a manufacturer of solar-powered drones that can stay in the air almost indefinitely, relaying broadband Internet connection to remote areas. It is seen as yet another step in the U.S. based Web giant’s bid to bring Internet to the whole world. VOA’s George Putic reports.
AppleAndroid