Canada denies Arab media report it will take in 100,000 Palestinians

According to the report, Canada would receive 100,000 Palestinians from Lebanon and Syria, and Spain would receive 16,000 Palestinians from Lebanon, alongside similar agreements with Belgium and Fran

By JERUSALEM POST STAFF
September 5, 2019 18:18
2 minute read.
Canada denies Arab media report it will take in 100,000 Palestinians

Hollywood actress and social activist Susan Sarandon walks with Mariam Shaar, a Palestinian entrepreneur in Burj al-Barajneh refugee camp in Beirut, Lebanon March 4, 2019.. (photo credit: MOHAMED AZAKIR / REUTERS)

Canada denied a report in the Lebanon-based newspaper Al Akhbar on Wednesday claiming that the country has reached an understanding with the United States that it will receive 100,000 Palestinians: 40,000 from Lebanon and another 60,000 from Syria.

The Lebanese paper quoted a source in a Palestinian faction. The paper claimed that there is a further understanding with Spain to receive 16,000 Palestinians from Lebanon, alongside similar agreements with Belgium and France. The understandings would lead to the reduction of the cost of migration from $12,000 to $7,000 per person.

The representative of Hamas in Lebanon, Ahmed Abdel-Hadi, told Al Akhbar that part of the Trump administration's "Deal of the Century" aims to resettle between 75,000 and 100,000 Palestinians in Lebanon and displace the rest to more than one country.


About 40,000 Palestinians have left Lebanon in the last four years through legal emmigration; others have taken illegal routes.

The Canadian government rejected the report, claiming that it was false. 

"Canada is a welcoming country to people from around the world, but it is important that people rely on accurate information before starting their journey," Mathieu Genest, press secretary for the Ministry of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship Canada told The Jerusalem Post

"There are no special programs currently being considered to resettle people from Lebanon or Syria. Little information is publicly available about who registered or is responsible for the content. We chose to correct the disinformation to remind both prospective immigrants and Canadians that accurate information is available through Government of Canada websites," he added.

Genest said that Canada, "regularly monitor[s] for online misinformation and disinformation. When false information is being circulated, as in this case, we aim to act quickly to provide facts.


"Budget 2019 invests nearly $52 million to ensure that Canadians, and those seeking to start a new life in Canada, are protected from unscrupulous immigration consultants," he added.


According to Al Akhbar, many Palestinian youth are trying to emigrate from Lebanon at all costs, but many attempts end in tragedy. Some who try to emigrate die while trying to cross seas or deserts.


Those who have emigrated so far have been the "victims" of humanitarian and life pressures, the shrinking of UN Relief and Works Agency and the fabrication of security events, as well as organized networks that influence young people and families to persuade them to emigrate as American pressure grows to implement the deal, according to Abdel-Hadi.


"Hamas has developed a strategy to counter migration based on an understanding with Lebanon in order to relieve the pressure so that the Palestinians will feel that they are living a dignified life, gain human rights achievements, pressure UNRWA to improve services and have Palestinian factions contribute to projects that provide jobs for youth," he said.

The Trump administration’s "Deal of the Century" peace plan is not expected to be released until after Israel's September 17 elections, as per US special envoy Jason Greenblatt.


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