The Access Center for Human Rights (ACHR) has identified government decisions in Lebanon as a major factor contributing to the rise in forced deportation campaigns against refugees, leading to an increase in smuggling and human trafficking incidents.
In its latest report titled “Crimes of Kidnapping and Human Trafficking after the Forced Deportation of Refugees from Lebanon,” the rights group has documented 365 cases of Syrian refugees being forcibly deported from Lebanon since the start of the campaign in April until June 13. Among those affected are 12 refugees with legal residency papers, 13 women, and 22 minors. The report also highlights 841 cases of arbitrary arrests since the campaign began, including 17 refugees with legal residency papers, 13 women, and 25 minors.
During the campaign, the report exposes 82 instances where deported refugees were handed over by Lebanese authorities to the Fourth Division of the Assad regime, which in turn delivered them to smugglers across the border.
ACHR revealed that six Syrian refugee activists were kidnapped by the Assad regime’s embassy in Beirut, emphasizing that kidnapping has become widespread and poses a growing threat unless the Lebanese government takes serious measures to hold the perpetrators accountable.
The report urges the Lebanese government to prioritize the security of Syrian refugees and individuals at risk of abduction by criminal gangs and human traffickers. It also calls on the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) to enhance protection measures for the most vulnerable refugees, offering them necessary psychological and social support in the event of any action causing psychological or physical harm.
(Source: SOC’s Media Department)