Warning of “starvation” in Lebanon due to Corona

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Lebanon Threatened by hunger due to epidemic-related closures, unless the government urgently develops a robust and coordinated aid plan".

She added "it causes The Covid Epidemic-19 In the aggravation of a devastating economic crisis that was already present".

In addition to 4.5 million Lebanese, the authorities estimate that there are 1.5 million Syrian refugees and 174,000 Palestinian refugees.

Lebanon has so far officially registered 575 injuries, including 19 deaths.

Since mid-March, the government has taken a series of measures, starting with a total closure that excludes ovens and foodstuff stores, and requires residents to stay in their homes and close all sea, air and land outlets, to a total curfew at night.

These measures have major repercussions for the daily workers, many of whom are refugees, as well as workers in the liberal professions, who suffer mainly from the economic collapse. And 45 percent of the country’s population is now living in poverty.

Lina Zemet, senior researcher on poverty and inequality at Human Rights Watch said: "The targeted closure has slowed the spread of the Corona virus, exacerbating poverty and the prevailing economic difficulties in Lebanon before the virus arrived".

She added "Many have lost their income, and more than half the population may be unable to purchase their food and basic necessities if the government does not intervene.".

To address the consequences of the Covid-19 epidemic, the government was formed "Social emergency committee".

The Minister of Social Affairs announced on Wednesday "Social Solidarity Program" Within this plan, and its goal "Helping families most in need and affected by the result The global epidemic".

The government agreed at the end of last month to "Provide a cash contribution of 400,000 Lebanese pounds to be paid to the most needy families".

except if Human Rights Watch She considered the government "No details were provided" About the number of beneficiaries and how to implement the plan.

And local media reported last month that a taxi driver burned his car when security forces asked him not to roam in compliance with the restrictions. A social media image of a person holding a sign in which he offers to sell his kidney was also circulated.

International organizations warn of a catastrophe that may affect the crowded and poor Palestinian refugee camps in the event of the arrival of the new Corona virus, especially that most of them suffer from difficult living conditions, and the majority of them work in limited areas such as agriculture and construction.

Ai Majzoub, Lebanon’s researcher for the organization, said "Syrian refugees did not have many economic options even before the Coruna virus crisis", Indicating their status "It mainly depends on international aid for refugee programs".

Lebanon has been experiencing a rapid economic downturn for months, amid severe liquidity shortages, a rise in prices and a devaluation of the lira against the dollar in the parallel market.

And she called the government, which is about to finalize an economic plan, and called it"Rescue"Monday, the international community to support Lebanon financially to help it overcome its financial and economic crises, exacerbated by the epidemic.

And the World Bank is discussing, according to what a spokeswoman told AFP at the end of last month, with the government to provide technical and financial support to Lebanon to help it cope with the economic and financial repercussions on the poor.

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“Millions of residents,” the organization said in a statement Lebanon Threatened by starvation due to epidemic-related closures, unless the government urgently establishes a robust and coordinated aid plan. “

“She caused The Covid Epidemic-19 In the aggravation of a devastating economic crisis that was already present. “

In addition to 4.5 million Lebanese, the authorities estimate that there are 1.5 million Syrian refugees and 174,000 Palestinian refugees.

Lebanon has so far officially registered 575 injuries, including 19 deaths.

Since mid-March, the government has taken a series of measures, starting with a total closure that excludes ovens and foodstuff stores, and requires residents to stay in their homes and close all sea, air and land outlets, to a total curfew at night.

These measures have major repercussions for the daily workers, many of whom are refugees, as well as workers in the liberal professions, who suffer mainly from the economic collapse. And 45 percent of the country’s population is now living in poverty.

“The targeted shutdown has slowed the spread of the Corona virus, exacerbating poverty and the prevailing economic hardship in Lebanon before the virus arrived,” said Lina Zemet, senior researcher on poverty and inequality at Human Rights Watch.

“Many have lost their income, and more than half of the population may be unable to purchase their food and basic necessities if the government does not intervene,” she added.

To address the repercussions of the Covid-19 epidemic, the government formed a “Social Emergency Committee”.

On Wednesday, the Minister of Social Affairs announced a “social solidarity program” as part of this plan, and its aim is to “help the most needy and affected families by The global epidemic“.

The government agreed at the end of last month to “provide a cash contribution of 400,000 Lebanese pounds to the needy families.”

except if Human Rights Watch It considered that the government “did not provide sufficient details” about the number of beneficiaries and how the plan was implemented.

And local media reported last month that a taxi driver burned his car when security forces asked him not to roam in compliance with the restrictions. A social media image of a person holding a sign in which he offers to sell his kidney was also circulated.

International organizations warn of a catastrophe that may affect the crowded and poor Palestinian refugee camps in the event of the arrival of the new Corona virus, especially that most of them suffer from difficult living conditions, and the majority of them work in limited areas such as agriculture and construction.

“Syrian refugees did not have many economic options even before the Corona Virus crisis,” said Ai Majzoub, Lebanon’s researcher for the organization, noting that their situation “depends mainly on international assistance for refugee programs.”

Lebanon has been experiencing a rapid economic downturn for months, amid severe liquidity shortages, a rise in prices and a devaluation of the lira against the dollar in the parallel market.

The government, which is on the verge of finalizing an economic plan and describing it as a “rescue,” on Monday called on the international community to support Lebanon financially to help it overcome its financial and economic crises, which were exacerbated by the epidemic.

And the World Bank is discussing, according to what a spokeswoman told AFP at the end of last month, with the government to provide technical and financial support to Lebanon to help it cope with the economic and financial repercussions on the poor.







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