Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.


Egypt - no Syrian refugees forced to leave

14 November 2013, 07:05

Cairo - Egypt claimed Wednesday it has not forced any Syrian refugees to leave the country as alleged by Human Rights Watch, adding that an entry visa requirement would soon be dropped.

"No Syrian refugee is made to depart from Egypt unless they have been proven to have entered the country through illegal immigration, an action contrary to Egyptian law," a government statement said.

"The practice in these cases is for the departing individual to choose their destination, without being forced to leave or being returned to Syria."

HRW said Monday that Egypt detained more than 1 500 refugees from Syria including Palestinians and 250 children, before forcing most to leave the country.

The New York-based watchdog said that most of the refugees who were arrested had been trying to "migrate to Europe on smugglers' boats."

It accused Egyptian authorities of particularly targeting Palestinians fleeing from the Syrian war by preventing them "from seeking protection" from the UN refugee agency UNHCR and telling them to leave or face "indefinite detention."

HRW says some 300 refugees from Syria, almost two thirds of them Palestinians, are still behind bars and demanded that Egypt hold accountable the security officials who ordered their detention.

Dismissing HRW's claims, Egyptian authorities said "dictating the coerced departure of Syrians from Egypt" was not an official state policy.

"Syrians live naturally in Egypt and have integrated into Egyptian society, which is reflected by the fact that there are no camps in Egypt for Syrian refugees or displaced Syrians," the statement said.

750 000 Syrians

"The content of the report is wholly inaccurate, deliberately implying that Syrian refugees in Egypt suffer difficult conditions, which is inaccurate."

It said more than 320 000 Syrian refugees have arrived in Egypt since 2011, bringing the total number of Syrians residing in the country to 750 000.

"It is thus unreasonable to pass judgement on the situation of Syrian refugees in Egypt by shedding light on individual cases with the intention of generalising," the government said.

Cairo said it would soon reverse its decision to demand entry visas for Syrians.

"This is an exceptional, circumstantial, and temporary decision, and is expected to be reversed as soon as the security situation subsides," it said.

It also said Syrians in Egypt would be granted the same "privileges as Egyptians when it comes to health and education."



Read News24’s Comments Policy

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Read more from our Users

Nigeria @ 56: Words to my green f...

A leader’s job is not to dictate, but rather to be respected, admired and be a trustee, of the land we love, with so much potential, a land which should be freer than free. Its still a long way to fufilling our destiny! Read more...

Submitted by
Isaac Asabor263
Recession: An opportunity for Nig...

The recession should be seen as an opportunity for the country’s promotion as long as we all collectively conduct ourselves in a patriotic manner, writes Isaac Asabor.  Read more...

Submitted by
Black and White

We want to imitate the whites in everything because we are ignorant of our inherent originality and content. We spend all our Naira to acquire his inventions because we so oblivious of our natural endowments that we allow him have it for free. Read more...

Submitted by
Nate Nat
Adamawa State University Mubi: A ...

ADSU integrity forum has accused the Sunday Joshua Wugira, a lawyer, of adopting unorthodox tactics by abusing his privilege by attacking the integrity of ADSU Vice Chancellor Dr. Moses Zira Zaruwa, writes a News24 reader. Read more...

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
My Country Nigeria (Part One)

Poetry by Abdulsalam Jubril.

Submitted by
Abdulsalam Jubril
Recession, dearth in leadership a...

Every leader has the opportunity to become great and making himself immortal in the lives and hearts of people for generations to come. Will Mr. President seize this opportunity?, questions Abdulsalam Jubril. Read more...