• 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 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.

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Lebanon

  • 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.
  • Jan 13, 2014
    What is Ariel Sharon's legacy? The eulogies have focused on his decision to pull Israeli settlers out of Gaza in 2005 under the so-called "disengagement plan." U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon praised Sharon's "political courage and determination." U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry said Sharon "surprised many in his pursuit of peace."
  • Dec 19, 2013
    Sectarian tensions between the Alawite Jabal Mohsen neighborhood and surrounding Sunni neighborhoods have led to increasing targeted attacks against Alawites in the northern Lebanese city of Tripoli. The Lebanese authorities’ response has remained weak even as the conflict in Syria has seriously aggravated tensions there.
  • Dec 13, 2013
    Lebanon is no stranger to the horrors of violence, proxy wars, sectarian strife, stagnant reforms, economic woes and refugee crises. In 2013 all of these afflictions have pushed the country into one of its worst security and social crises in years.
  • Nov 26, 2013
    Women refugees from Syria are being sexually harassed by employers, landlords, and even faith-based aid distributors in Lebanon, Human Rights Watch said today. Human Rights Watch interviewed a dozen women who described being groped, harassed, and pressured to have sex.