Lebanon Outraged by Reports of Arrests of Returning Syrians

Human rights groups and UNHCR say conditions in Syria are not safe for many people to return, according to al-Souria Net.

The Lebanese General Security denied the arrest of several Syrians recently repatriated, by the Assad regime. This comes despite sources confirming that a number of people were arrested.

The Lebanese General Security said in a statement on Thursday that “well-known parties” are behind spreading rumors and false news about the exposure of displaced Syrians to arrests, disappearance, and harassment.

This is part of an “organized and programmed campaign”, led by organizations and social media sites, “that is not based on any facts or data”, he said.

It claimed that these organizations “move under different names, according to agendas that work to spread fear and doubt in the hearts of the displaced about the voluntary return. They are drawing scenarios that have nothing to do with reality and reality. They even say their fate will be unknown if they return to their homeland.”

The Lebanese government announced the return of Syrian refugees as part of the so-called “voluntary return”. The first batch returned on October 27, consisting of 511 Syrians.

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The second batch was on November 6, and the convoy included 330 Syrians.

Residents in Qalamoun in Damascus countryside had earlier confirmed to al-Souria Net the arrest of some of the returning Syrian refugees by the regime authorities.

A source from the town of Jarajir said that Assad’s intelligence arrested some residents of the town who recently returned from Lebanon. The source noted that he knew of the arrest of at least three people.

“Sources told al-Souria Net that the regime’s intelligence arrested “H.A.” after his return. However, he was released days after his father paid large sums of money. The second person arrested is “M.M.T.”, and the third is “K.M.Q.”. They both remain in detention until now.

In parallel, al-Souria Net contacted people hailing from the town of Qarah in Damascus countryside, but they are still in the Lebanese town of Arsal. One of them confirmed the arrest of his relative, who recently returned from Arsal to his town in Damascus countryside.

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The Ministry of Displacement in Lebanon has put forward a plan to organize a “voluntary return” of Syrians to their country, due to the economic conditions in Lebanon.

However, human rights groups and UNHCR say conditions in Syria are not safe for many people to return.


This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.


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