Proposal to let Palestinians buy in Lebanon

Lebanese members of parliament have submitted a draft law to allow Palestinians to own property in Lebanon.

    Refugees in Lebanon are living in some of the harshest conditions

    Previously, Palestinians were refused the right to buy over fears their settlement would upset the country’s fragile sectarian balance and comprise a return to their homeland.

    The 10 deputies presented a draft on Wednesday “meant to give the right to own a housing apartment for those who do not carry a citizenship issued by a recognised state,” according to the state news agency INA.

    MP Marwan Faris, one of the signatories, was quoted as saying the deputies wanted to offer a gift to the Palestinian people on the third anniversary of the Intifada.

    According to the United Nations, two thirds of 375,000 Palestinian refugees living in Lebanon, currently live in 12 squalid camps, across the tiny country.

    Hundreds of thousands of Palestinians fled to Lebanon as part of their nation’s mass exodus when Israel was established in historic Palestine in 1948. Some have required Lebanese nationality while others emigrated during the 1975 to 1990 civil war.

    Palestinians continue to be regarded suspiciously by Lebanon’s Christians, who fear that the mainly Muslim community wishes to settle permanently in the country and upset the sectarian balance.

    The fears are reflected in the constitution which, apart from stopping Palestinians from settling in Lebanon, also bans them from a list of 70 professions, as well as purchasing property.



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