Abbas calls for Lebanese army to raid Palestinian refugee camps
Written by Malek   

Ain Al-Hilweh, a Palestinian refugee camp in Lebanon [file photo]

by Middle East Monitor

The President of the Palestinian Authority, Mahmoud Abbas, has suggested to his Lebanese counterpart that the Lebanese army should raid Palestinian refugee camps in the country and collect arms in return for ending the isolation of Ein Al-Hilwa Camp, Safa news agency reported on Monday. Abbas made the suggestion to President Michel Aoun during his latest visit to Lebanon. A local journalist, Toni Issa, revealed that Abbas is willing, for the first time, to give up its arms in Palestinian refugee camps across Lebanon. “It is a right for the Lebanese government to collect the arms outside and inside the refugee camps,” said the PA chief. “We are not in need of weapons.”

Abbas apparently told Aoun that the Lebanese army can control the refugee camps after collecting the arms in return for ending the isolation of Ein Al-Hilwa, the largest of the camps, located outside the city of Sidon (Saida). “Abbas suggested this bargain in the light of a difficult political situation for the PA,” Issa claimed. “The American president does not answer his calls; the UNRWA is fading; and the right of return is dying.” Issa described Abbas’s suggestion as a “bombshell” and ruled out any hope that the Lebanese government will accept it.