Bassil confirms deportation of Lebanese from UAE

NNA – The United Arab Emirates will expel 70 Lebanese nationals, mostly Shiites, within the next 24 hours, Foreign Minister Jebran Bassil said Friday.”The ministry of foreign affairs was informed by the Lebanese embassy in the Emirates that 70 Lebanese will be deported by the authorities in the next 24 hours,” Bassil told Agence France Presse.He was unable to give a reason for the expulsions.Sixty-three of those to be deported are Shiites, according to another senior Lebanese official who did not want to be named.The news first erupted when LBCI said on Thursday that the UAE authorities had given the Lebanese nationals 24 hours to leave the country.Voice of Lebanon radio (93.3) said their number is much higher.Around 130 families that live in Abu Dhabi, Ajman and Sharjah were told to leave, it added.An official in the UAE, which hosts more than 100,000 Lebanese workers, declined to comment.–AFP==========A.A.M