BAALECHMAY, MT. LEBANON – UNHCR today expressed its gratitude to local authorities in Mount Lebanon for their ongoing commitment to constructively deal with the Syrian refugee crisis during a handover ceremony for 12 reservoirs constructed in Mt. Lebanon that will provide clean water to tens of thousands of Lebanese citizens […]
BAALECHMAY, MT. LEBANON – UNHCR today expressed its gratitude to local authorities in Mount Lebanon for their ongoing commitment to constructively deal with the Syrian refugee crisis during a handover ceremony for 12 reservoirs constructed in Mt. Lebanon that will provide clean water to tens of thousands of Lebanese citizens and Syrian refugees. UNHCR also expressed appreciation to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia for its critical support to both refugees and Lebanese communities through the funding of this project.
The 12 reservoirs were built in the Mt. Lebanon area with funds from the Saudi Fund for Development in Lebanon. Works were recently completed on the US$3 million water project that began in 2014.
Mireille Girard, UNHCR’s Representative for Lebanon, said at the handover ceremony at the Baalechmay reservoir in Baabda that from the outset of the crisis, hundreds of Lebanese communities have provided Syrian refugees with unfaltering support. But what is undeniable, she added, is it that the hospitality of the Lebanese has come with severe costs.
“In less than two years, together with our partners and the Beirut and Mount Lebanon Water Establishment, as well as municipal authorities, we managed to build reservoirs that will expand water access in twelve of the most affected communities in Mount Lebanon and improve the lives of tens of thousands of Lebanese and Syrians. It is a remarkable achievement. “
Implementation of the Saudi-funded project was overseen by UNHCR with technical cooperation from ACTED and CHF International and in close cooperation with the Beirut/Mt. Lebanon Water Establishment. The 12 reservoirs were built in Siblin, Shehim, Barja, Baasyr, Rmeileh, Al-Borjen, Mansourieh, Baalchamay, Ghazir, Aachout, Halat, and Dik El Mehdi.
Among those taking part in the handover were the Governor of Mount Lebanon Mr. Fouad Fleifel, the Director of Beirut and Mt Lebanon Water Establishment Joseph Nsair, the Heads of districts of Mount Lebanon, and the mayors of the twelve towns that have benefited from the project.
The Governor of Mount Lebanon Mr. Fouad Fleifel said “We in Lebanon are committed to the will of life, despite all the difficulties and challenges, and here is the water of life flowing in the water supply network thanks to this achievement just like the blood flows in our veins.”
Girard concluded the ceremony by reiterating UNHCR’s thanks to both the project’s donors and the Lebanese communities in the area. “Addressing the pressure on Lebanon’s public services is the motivation behind the project we are inaugurating today. It is what makes the contribution of our Saudi partners and the commitment of the hospitable municipalities and Lebanese communities in the area so significant; so vital.”
For further information contact: