Lebanon’s rising tensions prompt advisories from Saudi Arabia and Kuwait
In light of the recent violent clashes in Sidon, Lebanon, Saudi Arabia has urgently called upon its citizens to depart from Lebanese territories promptly. The warning, issued late on Friday via the Saudi embassy in Lebanon, was posted on X (previously known as Twitter). While specific areas to avoid within Lebanon were not outlined in the embassy’s statement, it emphasized the significance of respecting the Saudi-imposed travel ban to Lebanon.
Simultaneously, Kuwait, through its Foreign ministry, released an advisory for its nationals currently in Lebanon. The statement, released early Saturday on X, cautioned Kuwaitis to remain alert and steer clear of “areas of security disturbances.” Unlike the Saudi directive, Kuwait didn’t advise its citizens to evacuate Lebanon.
On August 1, the United Kingdom revised its travel guidance concerning Lebanon. It now advises against “all but essential travel” specifically to certain regions in southern Lebanon in proximity to the Palestinian camp of Ain el-Hilweh. The reason behind this heightened caution was the deadly confrontation at the camp on July 29.
The conflict, which erupted between the mainstream faction Fatah and staunch Islamists, resulted in the death of at least 13 individuals, predominantly militants, as per security sources from the camp. Ain el-Hilweh stands as the most expansive among 12 Palestinian refugee camps situated in Lebanon. It is home to approximately 80,000 of the estimated 250,000 Palestinian refugees across the nation, based on data from the United Nations’ agency dedicated to Palestinian refugees.