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Aoun to European parliamentary delegation: To persuade European countries to help return of Syrian refugees to their homeland

President of the Republic, Michel Aoun, called on EU countries to help Lebanon by persuading European countries to work on the return of Syrian refugees to their homeland and to reduce the grave losses that have been inflicted on Lebanon economically and socially, as well as on the security level.

Aoun met at Baabda Palace on Wednesday with President of the far-right European group, the Alliance for Peace and Freedom, Roberto Fiori, with an accompanying delegation of EU MPs.

"The delegation was pleased to meet with President Aoun two years after his election," party president Roberto Fiori said. "The party includes a number of European national parties and is subject to the European law," he went on to explain.

"Our visit to Lebanon stems from our conviction that peace can be achieved in Europe if it is achieved in Lebanon and the Middle East. Recent developments have shown that terrorism is not a matter that only involves the Middle East, but it also involves European countries and the world as a whole," Fiori added.

"Through your wisdom, your patience, and your wise leadership, you have been able to maintain peace in your country over the past years. You're an example to be followed in the world," he added in an address to President Aoun.

"We do not just intend to represent European countries in the European Parliament, but also countries with which we have a long history. After our visit to Syria and our full awareness of developments there, we are now fully convinced that you represent the best example of peace," Fiori added, pledging to exert utmost efforts to defend Lebanon in Europe.

President Aoun welcomed the delegation, pointing out that Europe can be affected by everything that happens in Lebanon and the Middle East.

"Terrorists entered Lebanon during the war in Syria, but we have been finally able to clear the Lebanese territories through military operations by the Lebanese army," Aoun said.

However, the President briefed his visitors on the painful repercussions that Lebanon suffers due to the Syrian war, especially through the massive Syrian exodus into Lebanon, which has led to a huge population density despite Lebanon's small geographical area and modest resources.

In turn, Fiori pledged that the delegation would discuss this matter with all the European and international authorities. "The world cannot impose on Lebanon what it does not want. We will try to influence the public opinion to prevent any new internal war against Lebanon through external pressure."

Separately, the Head of State received on Wednesday former Spanish Minister of Foreign Affairs, Miguel Angel Moratinos, who congratulated the President on holding parliamentary elections.

President Aoun and Moratinos also held a round of talks on "local, regional, and international developments."

On another level, Elections Observation Committee member, Faysal al-Qaq, was sworn in by President Aoun in the presence of outgoing Minister of Interior and Municipalities, Nouhad Machnouk.

Source: National News Agency