• The security situation in Lebanon deteriorated in 2013 with violence spilling over from the armed conflict in Syria. Sectarian tensions led to deadly clashes in Tripoli and Saida amidst a climate of impunity for gunmen. Internal Security Forces (ISF) subjected suspected drug users, sex workers, and lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgender people in their custody to ill-treatment and torture. Migrant domestic workers were excluded from the labor law and subjected to restrictive immigration rules based on employer-specific sponsorship—the kafala system—which put workers at risk of exploitation and abuse. Discriminatory provisions that significantly harm and disadvantage women continued to exist in personal status laws, determined by an individual’s religious affiliation.
  • The Lebanese government forcibly returned about three dozen Palestinians to Syria on May 4, 2014, putting them at grave risk, Human Rights Watch said today. On the same day, the government also arbitrarily denied entry to Palestinians crossing over the land border from Syria.

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Reports

Lebanon

  • Jul 2, 2014
    After surviving detention in Syria, a flight to Lebanon, and a move to Turkey, Kinda, a Syrian activist and refugee, was facing a new kind of terror – death threats. She explained this to the Human Rights Watch researcher Hillary Margolis as they sipped tea in a dimly lit room off the courtyard of a Turkish café, surrounded by dark wood furniture and richly colored pillows.
  • May 5, 2014
    The Lebanese government forcibly returned about three dozen Palestinians to Syria on May 4, 2014, putting them at grave risk, Human Rights Watch said today. On the same day, the government also arbitrarily denied entry to Palestinians crossing over the land border from Syria.
  • Apr 29, 2014
    Many people in Lebanon reacted with outrage after YouTube footage surfaced in March showing a man in an office beating three children on the soles of their feet with a wooden stick. Media outlets later identified the man as Moussa Daher, principal of the Makassed School in the village of Daiat al-Arab in southern Lebanon. In the video, Moussa is heard saying to one of the children, “Every time you put your feet down I will beat you more.” The children are crying and pleading for him to stop.
  • Apr 28, 2014
    In Syria’s savage war, it seems incongruous to single out the experiences of one group. Yet many gay men there face a double threat: They’re being persecuted by the Syrian army and by militant groups while their families often reject them, or worse.
  • Apr 3, 2014
    The domestic violence law Lebanon’s parliament passed on April 1, 2014, should advance women’s rights and safety, but falls short in key areas, Human Rights Watch said today. The new law establishes important protection measures and related policing and court reforms, but leaves women at risk of marital rape and other abuse.
  • Apr 2, 2014
    Recent charges and prosecutions against news outlets, journalists and bloggers by Lebanese government officials reflect an urgent need to reform press and other laws to improve protection for freedom of expression.
  • Apr 1, 2014
  • Feb 7, 2014
    Not happy about having to travel to Cyprus to get a civil marriage? Lebanon’s justice minister may have an answer for you. On Jan. 29, Shakib Qortbawi introduced a draft law that would allow couples in Lebanon to marry under a civil law without leaving the country or having to cross out their religion on their civil records.
  • Jan 31, 2014
    In mid-January, a violent, but sadly characteristic week-long period of deadly Syria-related security incidents occurred across Lebanon. Early in the morning on Thursday, January 16, a car bomb ripped through the center of the Shia town of Hermel in Lebanon’s Bekaa Valley, killing six residents and injuring more than forty. The terrorist organization, Jabhat al-Nusra, claimed responsibility, saying it was striking a Hezbollah stronghold in response to what it described as “Hezbollah’s crimes against Sunni women and children in Syria.”
  • Jan 21, 2014
    Lebanon in 2013 struggled to manage spillover from the conflict in neighboring Syria and a growing refugee crisis, Human Rights Watch said today in its World Report 2014. The absence of a government for most of 2013 and parliament’s paralysis meant that the authorities failed to pass laws to improve the human rights situation in the country.