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Palestinians who fled Iraq welcomed

World in Brief / CHILE

April 07, 2008|From Times Wire Reports

Cheering Chileans raised the Palestinian flag, served national and Arabic fare and played local folk music to welcome 39 Palestinian refugees who will make the South American country their home after fleeing violence in Iraq.

"We hope that suffering will be a thing of the past, and Chile the source of your new happiness," Deputy Interior Minister Felipe Harboe said as he welcomed the 16 adults and 23 children who had spent months stranded at a desert camp on the Iraqi-Syrian border.

The refugees were the first of 117 Palestinians whom Chile has agreed to accept.

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