Coming home to Syria

Allaa Barri looks at initiatives to allow refugees to return to their war-ravaged country

The World Today
3 minute READ

Allaa Barri

Research Development and Communications Manager, Middle East and North Africa Programme, Chatham House

In recent months repatriating refugees to Syria has become a priority for some governments in Europe and the Levant.

In May, a number of Lebanese politicians started pushing for the return of refugees, and the Hezbollah militia set the process in motion by overseeing the repatriation of several hundred.

In July, Russia launched an initiative with the declared purpose of returning hundreds of thousands of Syrians in the barely credible timescale of a few months. One reason for this new push, especially among neighbouring countries, is the lack of genuine pressure from the international community to put an end to the Syrian conflict by helping to reach a political solution. But refugees cannot be returned to a country where war is still raging and where there is no political settlement to guarantee their rights.


The Russian plan

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