The Argentine multidisciplinary humanitarian mission that travelled to Lebanon in early May was coordinated by the President of the White Helmets Commission, Ambassador Alejandro Daneri, and five volunteer experts in logistics. They act on the principle of “non-indifference of States”, a guiding tenet of Argentina’s foreign policy.
In Lebanon, the White Helmets Commission has already installed sanitary tents for medical examinations, a shock room, a temporary hospitalization room with technological equipment, and a drugs deposit. The Commission also worked on community strengthening, organizing workshops designed to meet the needs of Syrian refugees. Since many refugees have suffered injuries or burns, the Commission provided first aid courses and training on issues such as the use of fire extinguishers, psychological and social counseling, and the use of pharmaceutical drugs and water purification methods.
“It is terrible to see children and women suffering, undernourished. Argentina feels very close to them, in spite of the distance; there are more than one million citizens of Syrian-Lebanese origin in our country and this makes us feel very close to them”, said the Minister. "We can contribute to solving the refugee problem responsibly from anywhere in the world. It is a responsibility shared by all,” she added on a visit to the refugee camp together with Argentine and Lebanese officials and members of international organizations.
The White Helmets Commission of the Argentine Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Office of the High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) has also appointed voluntary experts in water and sanitation and in gender-based violence, scheduled to stay on the ground for a month. Argentina’s contribution has also included providing supplies and accommodation for more than 100 families, including tents, blankets, personal hygiene kits, cooking sets and water purification tablets. These tablets will treat more than 800,000 liters of water for use by 550 people for over a year.
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