Monday, November 28, 2016

A story without an anti-Israel angle is not a story, but... - by Khaled Abu Toameh

...The refugee problem will end on the day their leaders stop lying to them and confront them with the truth, basically that there will be no "right of return" and that the time has come for them to move on with their lives. If the lies do not end, the day will come when these countries will be forced to place all the refugees behind walls and fences -- a move not likely to enhance stability in these countries. Ain al-Hilweh should serve as a wake-up call to all those Arabs who continue to subject Palestinians to apartheid laws and practices.

Khaled Abu Toameh..
Gatestone Institute..
28 November '16..

It is no secret that Arab countries have long mistreated their Palestinian brothers and sisters, governing them with inhumane laws and imposing severe restrictions on their public freedoms and basic rights. Building a wall around a Palestinian community to prevent terrorists from entering or leaving, however, has raised the bar on such infringements.

This is precisely what is happening in Lebanon these days. The construction of a security wall around Ain al-Hilweh, the largest Palestinian refugee camp (with a population of nearly 120,000), has drawn sharp criticism from Palestinians and revived memories of the abuse they regularly receive at the hands of their Arab brethren.

The Lebanese authorities say the Palestinians have left them no choice but to build the controversial concrete wall. The Palestinians, they say, refuse to cooperate against terrorists who have established bases within their camps. Yet that problem raises the question: "What has Lebanon done in the past half-century or so to help the Palestinians who fled to that country?" The answer: "Nothing."

In fact, among all Arab countries, Lebanon has been arguably the worst in its treatment of the Palestinians. Palestinian refugees in Lebanon are denied access to adequate housing and certain categories of employment. According to Amnesty International: "Over half of Palestinian refugees live in decaying and chronically overcrowded camps and discriminatory practices are permitted under personal status laws and nationality laws."

These anti-Palestinian practices are regularly ignored by the international community, including the mainstream media and human rights organizations, whose obsession with Israel blinds them to Arab injustice. While, every now and then, an organization does publish a report on the misery endured by Palestinians in Arab countries, these bodies rarely follow up on their work, thus creating the impression that they are doing so only for the sake of protocol.

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