Lebanon enforced new immigration controls at the Syrian border on Monday in a move to gain control of the steady stream of refugees from its much larger neighbour.
Shopkeepers and taxi drivers on the Lebanon side of the Masnaa border crossing said thousands of Syrians crossed the frontier on Sunday before the rules were implemented at midnight. On Monday, the border was quiet.
A senior security official said on Saturday that Syrians would have to apply for entry permits for the first time and provide information
about the purpose and length of their stay.
Syrians will now have to apply for one of six types of entry permit -- tourist, business, student, transit, medical or short stay. Each permit requires specific documentation, such as hotel bookings and $1,000 for tourists or an invitation from a Lebanese company for business people.