Fletcher: The Syrian crisis has attracted “resources and attention” towards the Lebanese school system (The Daily Star/Shaaban)
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Departing British Ambassador Tom Fletcher believes Lebanon's biggest challenge in the coming year will be keeping "the Syrian war on the other side of the border".On the domestic front Fletcher lamented the deep political divisions that end up hurting Lebanese citizens.Although Lebanon faces a number of ongoing challenges as he leaves his post, Fletcher was also quick to point out the successes of his four years as ambassador. Fletcher has brought education in Lebanon to the forefront of the bilateral relationship. Educating vulnerable children in Lebanon, regardless of their nationality, is more than just a moral imperative, Fletcher said, adding that there are still 500,000 children out of school in the country.On the subject of refugees, Fletcher said that Lebanon has borne an incredible burden and that the British government has been an important international partner during this trying time.Aside from aid, Fletcher said business between Lebanon and the United Kingdom has doubled over the past four years.On the whole, Fletcher said he is leaving Lebanon "optimistic".
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