Hundreds of Syrian refugees in Lebanon return home

A Syrian refugee cries next to her belongings as she waits to board a bus to take her home to Syria, in Beirut, Lebanon, Tuesday, Dec. 3, 2019. (AP )
Updated 03 December 2019

Hundreds of Syrian refugees in Lebanon return home

BEIRUT: Hundreds of Syrian refugees have headed home in the first batch to leave Lebanon since protests broke out in the small Arab country more than a month ago.
Since the early hours of Tuesday, scores of Syrians boarded buses in several locations in Lebanon before heading back to their hometowns in war-torn Syria.
Vanessa Moya of the UN refugee agency known as UNHCR, said some 225 Syrian refugees were scheduled to head back to Syria, raising the number to about 27,000 refugees who have returned to Syria over the past two years.
Thousands of Syrians have returned home from Lebanon since June 2018 as calm returns to parts of Syria.
Lebanon is hosting some 1 million Syrian refugees who fled their country after the war broke out eight years ago.


Rouhani: Iran will bypass US sanctions or overcome them through talks

Updated 27 min 13 sec ago

Rouhani: Iran will bypass US sanctions or overcome them through talks

  • Tensions have soared between Tehran and Washington since last year
  • The Islamic Republic has rejected negotiating a new deal with the Trump administration

DUBAI: Iran will overcome US sanctions by either bypassing them or through negotiations, and it will not cross its red lines in any talks with arch-adversary Washington, President Hassan Rouhani said on Wednesday.
Tensions have soared between Tehran and Washington since last year, when President Donald Trump pulled the United States out of Iran’s 2015 nuclear deal with six powers and reimposed sanctions on Tehran that have crippled its oil-based economy.
The Islamic Republic has rejected negotiating a new deal with the Trump administration, saying talks are only possible if Washington returns to the nuclear pact and lifts sanctions.
“The government is determined to defeat (the enemy) by bypassing America’s sanctions...or through various means including talks, but we will not cross our red lines,” the semi-official Iranian news agency ISNA quoted Rouhani as saying. In a rare act of cooperation between Tehran and Washington, the United States and Iran each freed a prisoner on Saturday.
Washington said it was hopeful that the prisoner swap would lead to the release of other Americans held in Iran and that it was a sign Tehran was willing to discuss other issues.
Iran released Xiyue Wang, a US citizen who had been held for three years on spying charges, while the United States freed Iranian Massoud Soleimani, who had faced charges of violating US sanctions against Tehran.
Iran said on Monday there were about 20 Iranians jailed in the United States in cases linked to sanctions violations.