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“I Have No Idea Why They Sent Us Back” : Jordanian Deportations and Expulsions of Syrian Refugees

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Resource type:Research, reports and studies
Language:English
Keywords:Conflict, violence & peace, Host Communities, Protection, human rights & security, Refugees/IDPs
Countries:Jordan, Syria
Agency:Human Rights Watch
Date published:October 2017
Pages:34pp

Despite a decades-long history of hospitality that has earned Jordan an international reputation as one of the world’s great refugee-hosting countries, since 2014, and especially in 2016 and 2017, Jordan has been marring that reputation by summarily deporting Syrian refugees. The authorities have been deporting refugees—including the collective expulsion of large families—without giving them a meaningful chance to challenge their removal and failing to consider their need for international protection. In the first five months of 2017, Jordanian authorities were deporting about 400 registered Syrian refugees per month, in addition to about 300 unorganized returns of registered refugees per month that appeared to be voluntary. Another 500 refugees per month were estimated as returning to Syria with little known about the circumstances of their return.

Human Rights Watch interviewed 35 Syrian refugees in Jordan and an additional 13 Syrians by telephone whom Jordanian authorities had recently deported to Syria. Those whom authorities deported, or who knew or communicated with others who were deported, consistently said that authorities produced little evidence of wrongdoing before their removal. Jordanian officials also did not give any real opportunity to Syrian refugees to contest their removal or to seek legal help or the assistance of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) prior to their deportation. 

 

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