Inside Story
Lebanon's Palestinians
They form an estimated 10 per cent of the population but have no legal standing.
Last Modified: 23 Apr 2010 13:05 GMT

An estimated 10 per cent of the population of Lebanon are Palestinians with no legal standing whatsoever.

As their numbers have swelled over the past six decades, they have become part of - what was for a long time the violent - fabric of Lebanese life.

Close to half a million people living in a country that helped to draft the Universal Declaration of Human Rights in 1948 are denied virtually every basic civil freedom.

The prime question then is: Can Palestinians in Lebanon be provided with social and economic rights while preserving Lebanese sovereignty and the concept of the right of return or should they remain uninvited guests forever?

Inside Story discusses with guests: Khalil Makkawi, the former head of the Lebanese Palestinian dialogue committee; Abdullah Abdullah, the PLO's representative to Lebanon; and Nadim Shehadi, the director of the centre for Lebanese studies at Oxford University and an associate fellow at London's Royal Institute of International Affairs.

This episode of Inside Story aired on Tuesday, April 20, 2010.

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