UNHCR Lebanon Statement on returns from Arsal

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03.08.2017

With regard to the return of fighters from Syrian armed groups and their families from Arsal to Syria, UNHCR would like to confirm that the Agency is not part of the agreement underlying these returns and is not involved in the movement.

UNHCR is not in a position to ascertain to what extent refugees, who are civilians by definition, are returning in this movement.

In this context, UNHCR notes that refugee returns need to be individual decisions, based on objective information about the conditions in the place of intended return, and made free from undue pressure.