ARSAL, Lebanon (Reuters) – Dima al-Kanj’s house is now a pile of rubble and twisted metal.
It was just a concrete hut near the Lebanese border, but she had spent five years trying to make it cozy for her children after fleeing the war in Syria.
Army - Orders
Then, under army orders, she had to smash it.
“Every year, we fixed up one thing after another so that we could live in what you’d call a home,” she said, standing in the room leveled to the ground in the remote Lebanese town of Arsal. “Now, there’s nothing left.”
Kanj - Thousands - Refugees - Government - Decision
Kanj is among thousands of Syrian refugees who will be left stranded by a government decision to dismantle “semi-permanent structures” in eastern Lebanon, aid agencies say.
At least 15,000 children could become homeless.
Lebanon - Enforcement - Work - Housing - Rules
Lebanon is toughening enforcement of work and housing rules – some of which were ignored for years – on its more than 1 million Syrian refugees. Lebanese politicians have also ramped up their calls for the Syrians to leave.
The army demolished at least 20 refugee homes on Monday, seven global aid agencies said.
Makeshift - Arsal - Camp - Kanj - Home
In the makeshift Arsal camp where Kanj lives, home to 450 people, refugees said the army arrived at dawn with a small bulldozer taking down a few shelters.
Soldiers came again two days later as a reminder that people must remove their concrete walls and metal roofs.
Kanj - Men - Camp - Hut - Jackhammers
Kanj, 30, has since paid men from a nearby camp to knock down her hut with jackhammers. She preferred to do it herself than face a forcible demolition.
She and her four small children are now crammed into their neighbor’s hut across the dirt road with a dozen people.
Room - Top - Stuff - Place - Anything
“We’re all sitting inside the same room on top of each other with our stuff,” she said. “We can’t rent a place or leave or do anything at all.”
People at the camp said...
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