Lebanon: Save the Children statement on Nahr el Bared

Clashes between the Lebanese army and the armed group Fatah al-Islam at Nahr al-Bared Palestinian refugee camp have left at least 14 civilians dead and 120 injured, including 22 children, according to Save the Children Alliance and its partners working at the camp near Tripoli.

The humanitarian situation in the densely populated camp, where over 20,000 men, women and children have been trapped by the fighting, is deteriorating rapidly. Many families are now without access to emergency medical aid, food, water or electricity. Around half of those trapped in the camp are children.

Save the Children Alliance, Nabaa (Developmental Action Without Borders), Women s Humanitarian Organization (WHO), National Association for Vocational Training and Social Services (NAVTSS), Children and Youth Center (CYC), and Ghassan Kanafani Cultural Foundation (GKCF) strongly urge the following:

- All parties in the conflict must distinguish between civilian and military targets, and avoid actions that harm innocent civilians, in accordance with international humanitarian law and conventions.

- The Lebanese authorities and all combatants must allow the Red Crescent/ Red Cross and others emergency services providers safe access to non-combatants immediately.

- Non-combatants must also be allowed to leave the area of conflict safely and find refuge outside the camp if necessary.

- The responsible authorities should also offer and facilitate humanitarian support to all those affected by the recent fighting.

Working closely with local partners, Save the Children Alliance supports projects in Nahr al-Bared camp and other locations across Lebanon to improve the lives of children regardless of race, religion or gender.

For more information please contact Bernhard Hillenkamp on (+961) 03 964 823 and Shaheen Chughtai on (+961) 03 904 653