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Fierce fighting between Syrian rebels and the Lebanese army in the town of Arsal, North Bekaa, has caused thousands of Syrian refugees and Lebanese to flee for safety.
8 August 2014 ̶ Today, international relief organisation Medair is responding to the situation by participating in an inter-agency needs assessment led by the UN Refugee Agency in Laboue, a town 5 to 10 km from Arsal ̶ the closest location that humanitarian convoys are able to access at this time.
Medair has been active in Lebanon and Jordan since September 2012, providing shelter, essential household items, and nutrition support for thousands of refugees fleeing the conflict in Syria.
According to the UN Refugee Agency, 1,700 Syrian refugees have fled north of Arsal for safety and 800 Lebanese and Syrian families have been displaced into North and Central Bekaa. More civilians are expected to be displaced.
The immediate humanitarian response will be focused on locating displaced people in North and Central Bekaa who have fled Arsal and to provide them with assistance, primarily shelter. The results of the assessment, which will continue until mid-August, will determine the humanitarian response for agencies in a position to respond to the crisis. So far, the most urgent needs have been identified as shelter and water, sanitation, and hygiene.
“We have a responsibility to the communities that we serve ̶ both Syrian and Lebanese,” said Medair’s Country Representative for Lebanon, Anne Hageman. “Medair is well positioned to meet immediate needs in terms of shelter and water, sanitation, and hygiene. We will continue to use our mapping teams to locate newly arriving families and help coordinate efforts with the UN Refugee Agency, Ministry of Social Affairs, and other aid organisations.”
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Notes to editor
Medair helps people who are suffering in remote and devastated communities around the world survive crises, recover with dignity, and develop skills to build a better future.
For more information about Medair’s Syrian Crisis programme, please click here.