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EU Ambassador Christina Lassen and UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator Philippe Lazzarini met today with Prime Minister Saad Hariri ahead of the second Brussels Conference on "Supporting the Future of Syria and the Region."
Discussions focused on the importance for the international community to uphold its commitments, and in particular, the need to pursue efforts to increase support for the host communities who are at the forefront of the Syrian crisis.
The Brussels conference, co-chaired by the European Union and the United Nations, will deliver a message of international support to UN-led efforts towards finding a political solution to the conflict in Syria, and address the worsening humanitarian situation inside Syria. But most importantly for Lebanon, the conference will echo the international community's strong support to the neighbouring countries hosting more than 5.6 million refugees.
Lebanon's overwhelming generosity and resilience in welcoming over a million Syrian refugees serves as an example to the region and the world. The conference will be an opportunity for the international community to reiterate its support towards Lebanon. The funds, which will be raised at the conference, will be allocated mainly to infrastructure projects, waste management, livelihoods, health and education, benefiting both Lebanese host communities and Syrian refugees.
Last year's pledges, which were broadly met by the donors, contributed to the improvement of local communities and refugees' livelihoods, health and education. Schools that enrol Lebanese or Syrian students were refurbished, and a flat rate for medical care was introduced for anyone seeking public health support, amongst others.
EU Ambassador Lassen and UN Resident and Humanitarian Coordinator Lazzarini commended Prime Minister Hariri for involving Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) in the path to the Brussels conference. National and international NGOs significantly contributed to the agenda of the Brussels meeting and provided valuable input to make the conference an important step on Lebanon's way forward.