President of the Syrian Opposition Coalition (SOC), Nasr al-Hariri, sent a legal memorandum to the UN Secretary-General António Guterres, the UN High Commissioner for Refugees, and the UN Commission for Human Rights regarding the ordeal of Syrian refugees in Lebanon, especially the attacks that have recently targeted Syrian refugees in the town of Bsharri.
Al-Hariri made it clear that Syrian refugees in Lebanon are subject to frequent assaults committed by public employees, along with groups directed by racist motives, with actual participation or collusion of the authorities.
He said that the SOC received “several reports of premeditated killings or mortal abuse, and frequent reports of grave violations committed against refugees, such as arbitrary detention, torture, abuse of human dignity and harassment of women and children.”
Al-Hariri highlighted the incidents that have recently affected Syrian refugees in the town of Bsharri. He said: “The policy of collective punishment against the Syrian refugees in Bsharri has increased racism in a clear way, as it came as a revenge from innocent civilians, so that these actions take us back to the pre-state logic of solving problems, where revenge, the absence of the rule of law and the lack of the prestige of the judiciary.”
“Targeting the Syrian refugees in Bsharri’s incident is not the first – and unfortunately, it will not be the last – in light of the hate speech and intimidation of refugees practiced by a large group of the Lebanese political officials, so that the failure and corruption are evaded by blaming the refugees and holding them responsible for the collapse of the situation in Lebanon.”
He called for referring this memorandum to the competent authorities to oblige the Lebanese state to fulfill its international obligations and to take all necessary measures to protect the Syrian refugees on its territory.
Al-Hariri called for obligating the Lebanese authorities to respect all international covenants on human rights, in particular the Universal Declaration of Human Rights of 1948, the International Covenants on Civil Rights, the Economic and Social Policy of 1966, and the Geneva Convention of 1951 regarding refugees.
He also called for requiring the Lebanese authorities to exert more efforts to protect the Syrian refugees and compensate those affected during the recent incidents in Bsharri financially and morally.
Moreover, al-Hariri called for the Lebanese authorities to refer the perpetrators of violations against Syrian refugees in Bsharri to the courts to get their fair punishment. He also urged the Lebanese officials to stop issuing any racist statements that incite violence, and to hold any official who commits such sinful act accountable. (Source: SOC’s Media Department)