Lebanese President Aoun Urges World Leaders to Work for Syrian Refugees Return
By Staff, Agencies
Lebanese President General Michel Aoun Wednesday called on world leaders to join efforts in working towards the safe return of Syrian refugees.
“Addressing this crisis is certainly not the sole responsibility of Lebanon,” Aoun said during his speech at the United Nations General Assembly session in New York.
“We have many question marks about the positions of some active states and concerned international organizations, trying to hinder this return [and] the allegations that the security situation in Syria is dangerous,” he added.
He added that such an approach is raising fear within the refugee community, warning that this might prompt Lebanon to take action.
"This may drive Lebanon to foster the undertaken return process, in agreement with the Syrian State, when needed, to solve this dilemma which threatens our entity and existence," he said, noting that previous experiences of refugee crises and waiting "for political solutions are not at all reassuring."
After his speech, Aoun met with Iranian counterpart Hasan Rouhani in which they "discussed bilateral ties and the latest regional developments."
Before his speech, Aoun met with United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres, who told him that the UN supports "Lebanon's sovereignty, independence and the safety of its territories."
"[The UN] will do everything it can in order to help achieve these goals," Guterres told Aoun during a meeting between the two at the UN headquarters in New York.