News / Middle East

Syrian Refugees Struggle on Lebanese Border

Syrian Refugees Struggle on Lebanese Borderi
|| 0:00:00
X
Al Pessin
July 23, 2012 7:13 PM
Syrian refugees in Lebanon's far northeast corner can hear the war raging across the border, where some of their family members are fighting, and dying, in the revolt against Bashar al-Assad. VOA's Al Pessin visited the Wadi Khaled valley, where the refugees live in spartan conditions and rely on handouts from aid agencies to survive.

Syrian Refugees Struggle on Lebanese Border

Al Pessin
WADI KHALED, Lebanon — Syrian refugees in Lebanon's far northeast corner can hear the war raging across the border, where some of their family members are fighting, and dying, in the revolt against Bashar al-Assad. 
 
The men are clamoring for a signature on their ration cards. For them, it is the difference between feeding their families tonight, and not. The refugees here support the Syrian revolution, and they have fled the government's shelling of their villages.

Donated food is their lifeline. Volunteers at a mosque ration it out as each person reaches the door. But it is barely enough.
 
Batoul Hamadi, a 17-year-old girl, had dreams of becoming an accountant. Now she collects bread for 18 members of her family. "My mother wouldn't allow me to work. But I should look for work to provide for me and my sisters and brothers. I need to work. I'm obliged to bring in money for my family," she said. 
 
Across northern Lebanon it's easy to see smoke rising from some of the villages the refugees have fled.
 
The people at this makeshift refugee center are safe from the violence. But the same cannot be said about some of their relatives. Fuda Hussein has lost three of her sons fighting for the Free Syrian Army. "How should I feel? I feel nothing. I lost my house, I lost my sons. I have nothing. I only ask God to make me patient and give me the strength to keep us alive," she said. 

She lives in a room with several other women and their children. The electricity works only sometimes and dozens share one toilet.
 
Syria is literally a stone's throw away from some neighborhoods here. The family at this large but very basic house is hosting 27-year-old Khaled Daor, who was a rebel fighter until he lost part of his right hand to an artillery shell explosion. "My country is in bad shape. It is being bombed every day. How can I express it? It's very stressful. Life is very difficult," he said. 
 
The refugees in Wadi Khaled received Lebanese government medical help for a while, but that has stopped. The valley's economy is at a standstill, with the war all but ending cross-border trade. And the local council has no resources to help, says the regional mukhtar Ali Al-Badawi. "As long as the Assad regime stays in power, we will have no future and our situation will continue to be very bad," he said. 
 
Some of the Syrian refugees have been in Lebanon for more than a year. And with recent rebel advances and the strong government counteroffensive, it is more difficult than ever to predict when they might be able to go home. 

You May Like

Photogallery Oxfam: Ebola Could Be 'Disaster of Our Generation'

Meanwhile, Fidel Castro, the former leader of Cuba, says the Caribbean island nation will 'gladly cooperate' with the US in the fight against Ebola in West Africa More

Multimedia Kobani Fighting Sends 400,000 Refugees to Turkey

Refugees receive help from Turkish authorities and individuals, but say much more is needed More

India’s Ruling Nationalist Party Makes Gains in Regional Elections

Bharatiya Janata Party’s huge margin over its rivals puts it on course to form governments in the northern Haryana and western Maharashtra states More

This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: Anonymous
July 25, 2012 4:35 PM
I think it is great Lebanon and Syria are offering a helping hand, all of which should be billed back to Syria, for Mr Assad to pay for out of his very own pocket.

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Exclusive: American Joins Kurds' Anti-IS Fighti
X
Zana Omer
October 18, 2014 6:37 PM
The United States and other Western nations have expressed alarm about their citizens joining Islamic State forces in Syria and Iraq. In a rare counterpoint to the phenomenon, an American has taken up arms with the militants' Syrian Kurdish opponents. Elizabeth Arrott has more in this exclusive profile by VOA Kurdish reporter Zana Omer in Ras al Ayn, Syria.
Video

Video Exclusive: American Joins Kurds' Anti-IS Fight

The United States and other Western nations have expressed alarm about their citizens joining Islamic State forces in Syria and Iraq. In a rare counterpoint to the phenomenon, an American has taken up arms with the militants' Syrian Kurdish opponents. Elizabeth Arrott has more in this exclusive profile by VOA Kurdish reporter Zana Omer in Ras al Ayn, Syria.
Video

Video South Korea Confronts Violence Within Military Ranks

Every able-bodied South Korean male between 18 and 35 must serve for 21 to 36 months in the country’s armed forces, depending upon the specific branch. For many, service is a rite of passage to manhood. But there are growing concerns that bullying and violence come along with the tradition. Reporter Jason Strother has more from Seoul.
Video

Video Comanche People Maintain Pride in Their Heritage

The Comanche (Indian nation) once were called the “Lords of the Plains,” with an empire that included half the land area of current day Texas, large parts of Oklahoma, New Mexico, Kansas and Colorado.The fierceness and battle prowess of these warriors on horseback delayed the settlement of most of West Texas for four decades. VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Lawton, Oklahoma, that while their warrior days are over, the 15,000 members of the Comanche Nation remain a proud people.
Video

Video Turkey Campus Attacks Raise Islamic Radicalization Fears

Concerns are growing in Turkey of Islamic radicalization at some universities, after clashes between supporters of the jihadist group Islamic State (IS) or ISIS, and those opposed to the extremists. Pro-jihadist literature is on sale openly on the streets of Istanbul. Critics accuse the government of turning a blind eye to radicalism at home, while Kurds accuse the president of supporting IS - a charge strongly denied. Henry Ridgwell reports from London.
Video

Video Syrian Defector Leaks Shocking Photos of Torture Victims

Shocking photographs purporting to show Syrian torture victims are on display at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington. The museum says the graphic images are among thousands of photographs recently smuggled out of Syria by a military policeman-turned-defector. As VOA reporter Julie Taboh reports, the museum says the photos provide further evidence of atrocities committed by the government of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad against its own people.
Video

Video Drought-Stricken California Considers Upgrading Water System

A three-year drought in California is causing a water shortage that is being felt on farms and cities throughout the state. As VOA's Mike O’Sullivan reports, water experts, consumers and farmers say California needs to make changes to cope with an uncertain future.
Video

Video TechShop Puts High-tech Dreams Within Reach

Square, a business app and card reader, makes it possible to do credit card transactions through cell phones. But what made Square possible? VOA’s Adrianna Zhang and Enming Liu have the answer.
Video

Video Church for Atheists Goes Global

Atheists, by definition, do not believe in God. So they should have no need of a church. But two years ago, a pair of British stand-up comedians decided to create one. Sanderson Jones and Pippa Evans told the BBC they envisioned “something like church but without God". Their “Sunday Assembly” movement has grown from a single congregation in London to dozens of churches around the world. Reporter Mike Osborne visited with the members of a Sunday Assembly that now meets regularly in Nashville.
Video

Video Robot Locates Unexploded Underwater Mines

Many educators believe that hands-on experience is the best way to learn. Proving that the method works is a project developed by a group of students at the Stevens Institute of Technology, in Hoboken, New Jersey. They rose up to a challenge posted by the U.S. Department of Defense and successfully designed and built an underwater robot for locating submerged unexploded ordnance. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Liberia's JFK Hospital Reopens After Temporary Ebola Exposure

JFK Hospital is Liberia’s largest and one of its oldest medical facilities. The hospital had to close temporarily following the deaths of two leading doctors from Ebola. It is now getting back on its feet, with the maternity ward being the first section to reopen. Benno Muchler has more for VOA News from Monrovia.
Video

Video Hong Kong Protests Expose Generation Gap

Most of the tens of thousands of protesters in Hong Kong are students seeking democracy. Idealistic youths say while the older generation worries about the present, they are fighting for the territory's future. VOA's Daniel Schearf reports from Hong Kong.
Video

Video Liberians Living in US Struggle From Afar as Ebola Ravages Homeland

More than 8,000 Liberians live in New York City, more than in any other city outside of Liberia itself. As VOA’s Bernard Shusman reports, with the Ebola virus ravaging their homeland, there is no peace of mind for these New Yorkers.
Video

Video Kurds See War-Ravaged Kobani As Political, Emotional Heartland

Intense fighting is continuing between Islamic State militants -- also known as ISIS or ISIL -- and Kurdish forces around the Syrian town of Kobani, on the Turkish border. The U.S. said it carried out at least nine airstrikes against Islamic State positions Friday. Meanwhile the U.N. has warned that hundreds of civilians would be massacred if the town falls to the militants. Henry Ridgwell looks at the strategic significance of the city.

All About America

AppleAndroid