international intrigue

Lebanon Would Like Syria to Please Stop Sending Refugees Already

Syrian refugee kids play in the mud after rain as rain and winter worsens the living conditions of Syrian refugees living in a refugee camp in Akkar, Lebanon on January 02i 2014.
Photo: Mahmoud Salih/Anadolu Agency/Getty Images

Though Lebanon may be shielded from some of the harshest Islamic State attacks by government-controlled territories along its border with Syria, there’s one thing it can’t protect itself against: the creeping number of war refugees who are flooding into this more-stable neighbor. Some estimates put as many as 2 million Syrian refugees (about half registered, half not) in the small country, meaning that a fifth of the country’s residents now are Syrian citizens — and Lebanon has just about had enough. New border-crossers will need a time-limited visa and will be asked to state a specific purpose for their visit, though it’s not clear how (or whether) asylum claims will work under the new rules.

Number of Refugees in Lebanon Is Too Damn High