EU, Lebanon discuss political solution for Syria

EU High Representative Federica Mogherini met with the Lebanese foreign minister Affairs Gebran Bassil Tuesday and discussed the Syrian crisis and its consequences on Lebanon.
“We discussed in particular the Syrian crisis, the impact in Lebanon; We continue to be on the same side here agreeing that only a political solution can bring an end to the conflict in Syria,” Mogherini told a press conference after the 8th EU-Lebanon Association Council meeting.
“We also discussed our strong partnership and agreed that we will continue to work closely together in this respect,” she added.
On his part, Bassil told the joint press conference that, “the refugee crisis is an international issue that requires an international response driven by humanity and solidarity”.
“We appreciate being praised for what we are offering, in particular to the displaced population but we are disappointed with the lack of burden sharing and with the fact that most countries are trying to escape their international obligations of responsibility sharing,” he noted.
Since the outbreak of this crisis, the EU has provided 1.2 billion euro (USD 1.38 bn) in grants to assist Lebanon, he said.
According to a joint statement released after the meeting, the EU and Lebanon agreed that the only sustainable long term solution for refugees and displaced from Syria into Lebanon is their safe return to their country of origin, as conditions for such a return are met.

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