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camera_altSyrian refugees in Lebanon/Image from AFP
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Syrian detainees 'tortured arbitrarily' in Lebanon: Amnesty report

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The Amnesty International in its recent report accused the Lebanese security forces of committing torture crimes against Syrian detainees.

Titled "I wish I would die": Syrian refugees detained on terrorism-related charges and tortured in Lebanon, the report quotes several detainees' experiences about a series of violations including beatings with metal sticks, electric cables, plastic pipes and being hung upside down or forced into stress positions for long periods of time.

A total of 24 Syrian refugees currently or formerly detained in Lebanon on terrorism-related charges, lawyers were interviewed, and several legal documents were inspected as part of the research conducted between June 2020 - February 2021.

Amnesty pointed that the Lebanese security forces arrested the refugees for redundant reasons without enough evidences to support their claims such as similarity of their name to that of a suspect, hearsays from informants or content on their mobile phone.

Some complained that they were tortured with routinely used techniques in Syrian prisons. "They beat us with plastic tubes from the bathroom on our back. My back had open wounds that started becoming really bad. In the end, there were worms inside my wounds," Bassel, a former Syrian detainee said.

"There is no question that members of armed groups responsible for human rights abuses must be held accountable for their actions, but the Lebanese authorities' flagrant violation of Syrian refugees' right to due process has made a mockery of justice," stated Marie Forestier, Refugee and Migrants Rights researcher.

She added that the Lebanese authorities have utterly disregarded international human rights law at every stage, from arrest through to interrogation, detention and prosecution in unfair trials.

For every 10 refugees, nine of them out of the 1.5 million Syrians that seek refuge in Lebanon live in extreme poverty, according to UN.

Since 2011, hundreds of Syrian refugees have been incarcerated in Lebanon often indiscriminately on terrorism-related charges or sometimesclaiming relation to armed groups.

The organisation urged that the Lebanese government to release all Syrians held indiscriminately and to investigate torture and other ill-treatment allegations. It also called the government to implement the 2017 Anti-Torture Law effectively.

The report has forced the Lebanese prosecution to launch an investigation on the alleged violations perpetrated upon the Syrians.

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TAGS:Lebanon Syrian Detainees Middle East Updates Amnesty Report 
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