Special Report

Syrian refugees in Lebanon: ‘After corona, there’s no food anymore'

The situation for Syrian refugees in Lebanon has massively deteriorated on the back of the ailing Lebanese economy and the global coronavirus crisis.
The situation for Syrian refugees in Lebanon has massively deteriorated on the back of the ailing Lebanese economy and the global coronavirus crisis. © FRANCE 24 screengrab

Lebanon is currently the home to some 900,000 refugees who have fled Syria’s bloody civil war. But after Lebanon’s economy crashed late last year and the country was hit by the coronavirus crisis, the refugees are struggling even more to put food on the table. FRANCE 24’s Leila Molana Allen reports ahead of World Refugee Day.

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Eight years ago, Aisha, a Syrian refugee, arrived in Lebanon with her husband and children to escape the horrors of their homeland. They built a small house in Bekaa Valley, and the family finally felt safe.

“There was work for me, my husband, and my kids. We were able to get vegetables for a low price, all the food was affordable,” she says.

But after the Lebanese economy crashed, causing the lira to tumble, along with the coronavirus crisis a few months later, life has become extremely difficult for the family. Lebanese food prices have doubled, and in some cases even tripled.

“After corona there’s no food anymore. You go to get produce but you come back because you can’t afford it.”

Her cousin Basawi, who also lives in the camp, says the situation is so bad that “some children have never seen meat aside from in the butcher’s window”.

His wife works 13-hour-days in the nearby fields, making just 20 cents an hour. She needs to work for four hours just to be able to afford a litre of milk.

To watch the full report, please click on the player above.

 

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