UN Calls for Ceasefire in Palestinian Refugee Camp in Lebanon

The Palestinian refugee camp of Ein al Hilweh. (Photo: Nadine Kheshen, via Wikimedia Commons)

The clashes between the Palestinian Fatah movement and other armed groups erupted again late on Thursday.

The United Nations called on Friday for Palestinian groups at Ain Al-Hilweh refugee camp in southern Lebanon to cease fire and leave UN Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) schools immediately, Anadolu news agency reported.

“I urge armed groups to stop the fighting in Ain Al-Hilweh camp and vacate UNRWA schools immediately,” the UN Resident Coordinator and Humanitarian Coordinator for Lebanon Imran Riza pressed in a statement.

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The clashes between the Palestinian Fatah movement and other armed groups erupted again late on Thursday, injuring at least 20 people.

Eyewitnesses told Anadolu Agency that the clashes calmed down in the early hours of Friday, but the situation remains vulnerable to further escalation.

Riza stressed in his appeal to the fighting groups that the ongoing clashes in the camp and the takeover of UNRWA schools “threaten children’s right to education.”

According to the Lebanese National News Agency, machine guns and heavy gun shells were used in Thursday’s armed clashes in the refugee camp, forcing hundreds of refugees to flee the camp amid heavy fire.

On July 29, the camp saw heavy clashes between Islamic groups and Palestinian forces affiliated with the Fatah movement, which left 11 people dead and more than 40 others injured, according to UN figures.

Established in 1948, Ain Al-Hilweh is the largest Palestinian refugee camp in Lebanon, with 50,000 registered people, according to UN figures, though unofficial statistics put the camp’s population at 70,000.


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