THE DISCOURSES OF POLITICAL LEADERS TOWARDS SYRIAN REFUGEES IN LEBANON AND IMPLICATIONS FOR DOMESTIC POLITICS

2022-2-10
Dal, Derya
A tragic result of the prolonged conflict in Syria has been the refugee crisis that affected the international community in general, and the countries sharing borders with Syria in particular. Lebanon, a neighboring state to Syria, with a small territory and complex political system, has hosted the highest number of Syrian refugees per capita. Maintaining a fragile economic, social and political structure, Lebanon is greatly impacted by the arrival of a substantial number of refugees. Consequently, the refugee crisis has become one of the key topics in Lebanese political agenda. After the assassination of Rafiq Hariri, the former Lebanese Prime Minister in 2005, the Lebanese political landscape came to be dominated by two blocs respectively known as the "March 8 Alliance" and the "March 14 Alliance". The two blocs were defined with respect to the support (March 8) or opposition (March 14) they expressed towards the Syrian regime’s presence in Lebanon, which maintained a military presence in the country for almost three decades. This thesis argues that, despite the cracks in and transitivity among these blocs, this polarized structure was revived with the influx of Syrian refugees to Lebanon. In this context the discourse of four leading political figures from both blocs are analyzed, in an attempt to trace the differences between the two blocs with respect to Syrian refugees.

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Citation Formats
D. Dal, “THE DISCOURSES OF POLITICAL LEADERS TOWARDS SYRIAN REFUGEES IN LEBANON AND IMPLICATIONS FOR DOMESTIC POLITICS,” M.S. - Master of Science, Middle East Technical University, 2022.