West Bank, ALRAY- Remarks of Lebanese MP for the Future Movement bloc, Nazih Najem sparked resentment for calling UN to evict Palestinian refugees from Lebanon, claiming their existence encumbering Lebanese treasury.
Lebanese PM, Nazih Najem said in TV interview that a million and a half Syrian and 400 thousand Palestinian refugees live in Lebanon. Lebanese government incurred the 400 thousand Palestinians for prolonged years as well as the Syrians. We call the international community, who is responsible for their existence in Lebanon, to return them to their countries.
" their existence has encumbered the Lebanese treasury and the international community has to pay the dues it has, which are estimated at more than $ 25 billion. These funds are necessary to help us, but it will not help us before creating a government that is for all the Lebanese," said Najem.
The Alliance of Palestinian Forces in Lebanon condemned the remarks, saying that the Palestinian refugees' existence in Lebanon is a coercion of Israeli occupation for their lands, expulsion not desiring is the reason for their existence."we denounce such the remarks of Nazeh Nejem, and consider it a sign of racism against the Palestinians in Lebanon," said in a statement.
The statement noted that Palestinians in Lebanon saved not efforts to live in dignity in a land where they have forcibly expelled to.
The office of Future Movement bloc explained in a statement that the Nejem stance towards Palestinian and Syrian existence in Lebanon stemmed from inalienable rights.
It denounced any misrepresentation, or distortion that some seek, intentionally or unintentionally, to the speech of Najem in an interview with Al-Arabiya - Al-Hadath TV.
The statement went on saying that these inalienable rights are Palestinians right to return, and the Syrian right to save return to their country that is recognized internationally, holding the international community the responsible of its duties.
Nazih Najem is a deputy in the Lebanese Parliament, for the Orthodox seat in Beirut, and a member of the Future Movement bloc headed by President Saad Eddine Hariri, who is also Chairman of the Energy and Water Committee in Parliament.
Palestinian association for Human rights(witness) considered Najem's speech a racial, disturbing and surprising remarks.
It explained that Lebanese government does not offer any services to Palestinian refugees, however, UNRWA pays hundreds of million dollars to provide services to Palestinian refugees that contributes to pushing the economic wheel. It also noted that PLO and civil society organizations, whether local or international, also spend millions of dollars in Lebanon and that the Palestinian refugees were never a burden to Lebanese government.