Lebanon: Palestinians' anger at the new work permit requirement does not falter

August 28th 2019

On August 23, the Palestinians protested again to demand the same labor rights as Lebanese citizens, despite the announcement the day before the establishment of a new government commission to address the problem.

It is the entry into force on July 11 of new measures against the illegal employment of foreigners which has provoked the outburst of anger of the last weeks in the Palestinian camps. The Lebanese Ministry of Labor had given companies a one-month extended deadline to obtain the necessary work permits. Upon the expiration of the grace period, the government started conducting inspections and closed down establishments that failed to comply with the rules, while also issuing warnings to others.

This measure was criticized by civil society organizations which accused it of targeting Syrians in particular, estimated at approximately 1.5 million refugees in Lebanon according to the authorities.

But Palestinian refugees in Lebanon are also worried about paying for this campaign. In particular, they believe that the terms of social security to which they are subject are unfair, since a Palestinian must pay 25.5% of his salary to get only 8.5% as end-of-service benefits.