Syrian unrest unnerves Lebanon

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Syrian unrest unnerves Lebanon

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Events in Syria are having an effect on its neighbour, Lebanon – a country that has already had more than its share of bloody conflict.

Damascus has always been closely involved in Beirut’s politics, placing Lebanese leaders in an awkward position now. And the capital has witnessed clashes between pro- and anti-Assad factions.

But the thousands of Syrians who have have sought refuge in Lebanon over the last year – more than half of them in Tripoli in the north – appear to be speaking with one voice.

“We want Assad to step down and we want a humanitarian corridor,” said one woman who is in Tripoli with her husband and five children. And she is also worried about the treatment of the sick and wounded.

“Most importantly they need to maintain the hospitals because the hospitals there become prisons and people are getting treated in makeshift hospitals,” she said,

“We are calling on them to impose sanctions on the Assad regime and he should step down,” said another woman referring to the Tunis conference. “Enough oppression. We’ve been displaced. I’ve been here for seven months and I don’t know anything about my family. I hope we can go back to our country.”