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Palestine Refugees from Syria in Lebanon
In 2019, UNRWA requires US$ 277 million for its humanitarian response to assist Palestine refugees affected by the Syria regional crisis, including those remaining in Syria, as well as those who have fled to Lebanon and Jordan. US$ 46 million of the overall Appeal aims to provide continued emergency support to Palestinian refugees from Syria (PRS) in Lebanon.
A comprehensive head count carried out by UNRWA in July / August 2018 verified the presence of 29,145 (PRS) in the country, down from 32,042 recorded at the end of 2016. The gradual reduction is due to either onward movement to third countries or unassisted returns to Syria. In 2018, an increase of PRS returns to Syria was recorded by UNRWA Lebanon compared to 2017, while the PRS new arrivals into Lebanon decreased in 2018 compared to 2017. UNRWA has a robust monitoring system by physically visiting all PRS families in Lebanon twice a year.
Notwithstanding reduced numbers, PRS vulnerabilities as a result of protracted displacement and restrictions in Lebanon remain high and are not anticipated to abate. Almost 90 per cent of PRS in Lebanon are under the poverty line and 95 per cent are food insecure, according to a 2015 survey. There is a critical ongoing need for UNRWA to provide cash assistance, education and health services to mitigate their vulnerability, which is forcing many of them to flee the Middle East region. UNRWA provides PRS families with a monthly multi-purpose cash grant worth US$ 100 per family and an additional US$ 27 for each family member per month to cover food costs. Cash for winterization is also provided, all subject to funding.
The Agency will continue to advocate for the rights of Palestine refugees with the Lebanese authorities on issues such as the right to work, living conditions, and the legal status and civil registration issues for PRS residing in Lebanon. UNRWA will also continue to engage with the international human rights system to address these concerns.
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