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Startseite Urgent Actions 2019 06 Ahmed H. must be allowed to return home
UA 088/19
Abgeschlossen am 28. September 2019
Mitteilung schliessen

28.9.2019: Good News

We have received confirmation that Ahmed H. is safely home.

See below for more information about this wonderful news:

Media quote


Sample tweets:

1/Amazing news! Ahmed’s children have got their wish and he has flown home to them in Cyprus, after 4 years unfairly imprisoned in Hungary (not on wings, but by plane). Just in time for his daughter’s birthday! Thank you to everyone who supported him.

2/Thank you to everyone who took action for Ahmed H – it worked! After 4 years unfairly imprisoned in Hungary, he is finally home with his family in Cyprus – just in time for his daughter’s birthday in October.

Many thanks for all your support!



As the month of action in support of Ahmed H. is ongoing, we would like to encourage you to continue promoting and supporting this UA. We are thus extending the deadline to send appeals until 6 November 2019.

During this month of action our aim is to put pressure on the authorities in Cyprus and #BRINGAHMEDHOME in time for his daughter’s birthday on 14 October. A number of sections have already joined this action; a stunt happened last week in Belgium and over 16,000 petitions to the Cyprus Embassy, and the next action is happening in London this Saturday 28 September.

Thanks for your support!



We are extending the deadline to write appeals in support of Ahmed H. for 6 more weeks as the need for action remains.

Ahmed H. must be allowed to return home

AI-Index: EUR 17/0610/2019

Ahmed H. has been separated from his Cypriot wife and two daughters for almost four years. In September 2015, he was imprisoned in Hungary and wrongfully convicted for «complicity in an act of terrorism» in a blatant misapplication of Hungary’s counter-terrorism laws. Ahmed H. was conditionally released on 19 January 2019 and is being held in immigration detention in Hungary. As he is a Syrian national he is at risk being forcibly returned to Syria, a country that is not safe. Cyprus must allow his return home to be reunited with his family.


Ahmed H. lived in Cyprus since 2006 with his Cypriot wife. They have two young daughters. In August 2015, he left his home in Cyprus to help his elderly parents and other family members escape Syria. Upon arrival at the Hungary-Serbia border on 16 September 2015, they found themselves among hundreds of refugees stranded there after police fenced off the crossing with Serbia. Clashes broke out as some refugees attempted to get through. Hungary’s police responded with tear gas and water cannon, injuring dozens. Some people threw stones, including Ahmed H. But news footage also clearly shows Ahmed H. using a megaphone to call on both sides to remain calm. For these acts, he was arrested and eventually convicted of «complicity in an act of terrorism» under Hungary’s overly broad and vague counter-terrorism law.

Amnesty International closely followed the criminal proceedings, including monitoring the trial hearings, and concluded that the application of terrorism-related charges and Ahmed H.’s subsequent conviction for «complicity in an act of terrorism» were manifestly unfounded. The conviction rests entirely on the allegation that Ahmed H. attempted to induce the Hungarian police to open the border fence, and that he threw some objects during the disturbance at the border. While delivering the final judgement on 20 September 2018, the judge acknowledged that Ahmed H. had in fact tried to calm the crowd and mediate between the police and the crowd.

The government of Prime Minister Viktor Orbán in Hungary has sought – without evidence to back up their claims – to establish an inextricable link between refugees and migrants and the threat of terrorism. The misapplication of terrorism-related charges to Ahmed H.’s case was part of a wider effort to label refugees and migrants seeking safety as «terrorists» and threats to national security. Amnesty International has also documented statements by Hungarian government representatives that publicly pronounced Ahmed H.’s guilt before his trial even ended. Such statements compromised the fairness of the proceedings against Ahmed H. in violation of international fair trial standards, which include the presumption of innocence.

The right to private and family life is enshrined in Article 17 of the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights and Article 8 of the European Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms. Cyprus is a party to both these international human rights treaties. Any restrictions on this right must be in the interests of «national security, public safety or the economic well-being of the country, for the prevention of disorder or crime, for the protection of health or morals, or for the protection of the rights and freedoms of others». The conviction of Ahmed H. in Hungary for «complicity in an act of terrorism» does not fall within the national security exception to the right to family life because of the mis-application of terrorism charges to his case and the violations of Ahmed H.’s right to fair trial during the criminal proceedings in Hungary.

If Hungary were to return Ahmed H. to Syria it would be in violation of the principle of non-refoulement. This international human rights law principle guarantees that no one should be returned to a country where they would face torture, cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment and other irreparable harm.

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