Lebanon tells EU it will encourage Syrians to return

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Lebanon’s President Michel Aoun has told EU Foreign Policy Chief Frederica Mogherini that Beirut will continue to work for the return of Syrian refugees to safe areas in their war-torn country without waiting for a political solution.

The President added that Lebanon will try to ensure that Syrian returnees are not in danger.

Thousands of Syrian refugees returned home from Lebanon last year after government forces captured wide parts of the country.

Syria’s nearly eight-year conflict has led to the displacement of half the country’s population and created more than five million refugees, who fled mostly to neighboring Lebanon, Jordan, and Turkey.

Lebanon is home to some one million Syrian refugees, a quarter of the country’s population. An estimated 70 percent of them live in poverty.

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