Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Syria Neighbors: Keep Borders Open for Refugees

Despite Numbers, Host Countries Should Respect Right to Seek Asylum

Human Rights Watch
August 29, 2012

"(New York) – Syria’s neighbors should keep their borders open to the large and growing number of refugees fleeing Syria, while donor countries should generously support them. Turkey, Iraq, Jordan, and Lebanon have mostly opened their borders to more than 200,000 refugees from neighboring Syria, but in the past week some officials in these countries have said they are reaching their limit and may soon close their borders.

Despite the pressure of numbers, refugees from Syria should be allowed to cross into neighboring countries and remain there legally without fear of detention, confinement in closed camps, or deportation, Human Rights Watch said.

“For many years, Syria kept its borders open to Palestinians, Lebanese, and Iraqis fleeing conflict in their countries and allowed them free movement,” said Bill Frelick, Refugee Program director at Human Rights Watch. “Today, as Syrians flee horrific violence, neighboring countries should extend them the same hospitality.”...."

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