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Lebanon passed a law on Tuesday granting Palestinian refugees here the same rights to work as other foreigners, a step in ending years of discrimination that had restricted them to the most menial of jobs.
“We agreed to give Palestinians the minimum of rights, which would improve their living conditions, and this was necessary,” said George Adwan, a Christian lawmaker who had initially objected to the bill. “We only took into consideration their conditions, but we haven’t moved any closer to ma
''From 1968 onwards, the Palestine Liberation Organization (PLO) began conducting raids from Lebanon into Israel, and Israel began making retaliatory raids against Lebanese villages to encourage the Lebanese people to themselves deal with the interlopers''.
It’s no secret that Lebanon is second only to Israel in its mistreatment of Palestinian refugees. There are outspoken elements of the Lebanese political spectrum who make it clear that the Palestinians are unwelcome here, and that they will be expelled at the first obvious opportunity.
Lebanon’s economy has largely eluded the impact of the global crisis and performed remarkably well, reflecting a confidence boost from regained political stability and prudent macroeconomic management. Vulnerabilities have declined but nonetheless remain very high overall, in particular the public debt burden.
The members of Parliament decided to do essentially nothing to meet Lebanon’s legal, moral, religious, social and political obligations to her unwanted refugees. Parliaments gesture will likely not improve the lives of many, if even a handful, of the hundreds of thousands of refugees, 62 years after their expulsion from their homes and lands in Palestine.