Former Lebanese MP Fares Souaid, who serves as the chairman of the National Council for the Removal of Iranian Occupation, said in a September 11, 2022 show on LBC TV (Lebanon) that Syrian President Bashar Al-Assad's regime is changing Syria's demographics by driving out Sunni Muslims. He said that this is at the expense of Lebanon and Turkey, and he said that the tragedy in Syria is worse than the Palestinians' tragedy, particularly because of Hizbullah's involvement. For more about Fares Souaid, see MEMRI TV Clip No. 7029.
Fares Souaid: "Iran has made a mistake in the region, and it will be paying the price for it for a long time, together with all its allies. I stand behind what I am saying. In Syria, there are 12 million displaced people – six million within Syria and six million abroad. and at least 1.5 million here..."
Interviewer: "1.5 million are in Lebanon."
Fares Souaid: "And they constitute a real burden. It is the same in Turkey, and elsewhere."
Interviewer: "But on your side of the aisle, you defended their presence here after the war. Do you still defend their presence here even though they take [the jobs] of the Lebanese, and pose a cultural, security, and health threat?”
Fares Souaid: "Absolutely not. I defend their presence as displaced people and as refugees, but I do not defend their presence..."
Interviewer: "But 75% of them come and go. They set up businesses here and smuggle goods to Syria at our expense."
Fares Souaid: "I do not defend their presence if they take the jobs of the Lebanese, but we are all paying the price for the tragedy that has befallen Syria. It has become orders of magnitude worse than the tragedy of Palestine. There is a reason for this. Hizbullah went to fight there."
"Thirty cabinet members travelled to Syria to discuss this, how come they couldn't get the refugees back to Syria? Why would Bashar Al-Assad not take them back?"
"In my view, (the regime) is changing the demographics of Syrian society, tipping the balance in favor of one specific sect. They are removing the Sunnis from Syria."
Interviewer: "At our expanse and at Turkey's expense..."
Fares Souaid: "At our expense. We are the ones paying the price. This scheme is of a larger scale. They did the same in Iraq."
"If Hizbullah really wants to take over Israel and throw all of them into the sea, the $800 million that the Lebanese state spends on implementing Resolution 1701 should be diverted to schools, hospitals, and the rebuilding of the Beirut Port. Resolution 1701 would be called off, and Hassan Nasrallah would lead his forces into Galilee and take over Israel. Let's see if this blowhard is capable of entering Israel."