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Startseite Urgent Actions 2021 09 Three Syrian refugees at risk of deportation
UA 101/21
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Abgeschlossen am 1. November 2021

Three Syrian refugees at risk of deportation

AI-Index: MDE 18/4802/2021

Three Syrian refugees from Daraa governorate in southern Syria, Ahmad Al Waked, Tarek Al A’lo, and Fares Al Zo’bi, are at risk of forced deportation to Syria after General Security detained them at Beirut International Airport on 13,14, and 16 September 2021 respectively. Since then, the three detainees have been held in incommunicado detention.


Ahmad Al Waked, Tarek Al A’lo, and Fares Al Zo’bi are three Syrian who fled Daraa governorate in southern Syria fearing for their safety. Violent clashes between Syrian government forces and armed groups intensified in recent months in Daraa.

The three men entered Lebanon in view of seeking asylum in a third country. Lebanon is home to over one million Syrian refugees, who now make up more than a quarter of the population. In a December 2020 letter to Amnesty International, the General Security Office confirmed that the authorities had deported 6,002 Syrians between May 2019 and the end of 2020, including 863 in 2020, following the Higher Defense Council’s decision to deport refugees who entered Lebanon «illegally» after the date of 24 April 2019. Deportations were partially halted in 2020 due to the pandemic. Along with the 2019 decision, Lebanon has banned UNHCR, the UN refugee body, to register any new cases of refugees from Syria since 2015.

On 5 September 2021, General Security directorate issued a decision to deport six Syrian refugees accused of entering the country irregularly, despite the grave risks awaiting them in Syria. Amnesty International called in a statement for halting their deportation. In a welcome statement on 8 September, Major General Abbas Ibrahim, head of Lebanon’s General Security Office, confirmed they would not be deporting the six Syrian men. However, the six Syrian refugees remain to date in detention. This case is a sore illustration of the consequences of the Higher Defense Council’s decision to deport refugees who enter Lebanon «illegally» after the date of 24 April 2019.

Given that the right to seek asylum is a fundamental right and as Syria remains unsafe for returns, the Higher Defense Council’s decision must be promptly retracted and refugees coming from Syria should be afforded full protection in Lebanon. Amnesty International documented how Syrian authorities specifically target people who fled the country upon their return to Syria, subjecting them to torture, arbitrary detention and enforced disappearance.

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