Lebanon Has One Million Refugees from Syria

A refugee agency from the United Nations said that Lebanon now has over 1 million refugees from Syria who have had to flee their country due to the three-year civil war.

The agency, the UNHCR said the milestone of 1 million refugees was reached on Thursday. It said that Lebanon was struggling trying to keep up with the increasing influx of refugees. The population of Lebanon itself is just 6 million.

Antonio Guterres the High Commissioner for Refugees from the United Nations said the impact on Lebanon was staggering. Guterres added that Lebanon was in need of additional help in providing services for the refugees.

The United Nations has requested over $4 billion to help the refugees from Syria in the area this year. Close to half of that total is just for Lebanon along. Thus far, the amount of donations has reached just 13% of the amount requested.

The World Bank has said that the crisis in Syria has dramatically hurt the economy in Lebanon. Officials at the bank estimated that lost economic activity in Lebanon for just 2013 was over $2.5 billion.

Refugees have left Syria at increasing rates as the fighting in the country has continued and efforts internationally to broker a peace deal between the current regime of President Bashar al-Assad and the opposition has failed to bring about any progress.

The U.N. in April of 2012 registered only 30,000 refugees from Syria. In April of 2013, the total number of Syrian refugees was close to 1 million. Today, in all of the different refugee camps there is an estimated 2.6 million refugees. There are also another 6.5 million inside Syria that are displaced due to the fighting and destruction of homes and apartments.

Turkey is host to the second largest number of Syrian refugees with over 688,000. Jordan follows Turkey with more than 589,000, and then Iraq with 220,000 and finally Egypt has more than 136,000.

The United Nations stopped its issuing of death total in Syria, but says that more than 100,000 people have been killed. A human rights organization said this week that the number of dead has exceeded 150,000.


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