Detained Syrian refugees face deportation from Lebanon: Amnesty

Detained Syrian refugees face deportation from Lebanon: Amnesty
Six Syrians detained in Lebanon risk being deported back to Lebanon, according to Amnesty International.
2 min read
02 September, 2021
The men were arrested outside the Syrian embassy in Lebanon [Getty]

Six Syrian refugees detained in Lebanon last week face deportation to war-torn Syria, Amnesty International reported on Thursday.

The six men were arrested outside the Syrian embassy in Beirut as they collected their passports, accused of entering Lebanon irregularly.

They are now being held by the Lebanese General Security Directorate and risk being deported back to Syria imminently, said Amnesty International.

"Lebanon’s General Security directorate must ensure that these men are not forcibly returned to Syria. Doing so could endanger their lives," said Lynn Maalouf, Deputy Director for the Middle East and North Africa at Amnesty International. 

"Arbitrary detention, enforced disappearance and torture remain rife in Syria, and armed hostilities in some parts of the country have intensified significantly in recent months. No part of Syria is safe for returns, and these men must be protected."

Five of the six men are from Daraa province, southwest Syria, parts of which have been subject to a fierce regime siege and bombardment.

While a ceasefire deal has been agreed by rebels and the regime, the area remains volatile. If returned, the men would face dangers from fighting, security forces, and extreme poverty.

Syrians who have been returned to Syria have disappeared after being detained by the regime's notorious intelligence agencies.

Tens of thousands of Syrian detainees are believed to have been killed in regime prisons over the past decade.

"Under international law, the prohibition of refoulement means that no one should be returned to a country where they are at real risk of serious human rights violations," Maalouf added in the press release.

"Deporting these men would be a serious violation of Lebanon’s international obligations, including under the UN Torture Convention. Instead, Lebanese officials should release them or charge them with a recognisable offense."