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Weekly News Report: August 23-29, 2021

Filipina worker receiving the vaccine. Photo from The National

Articles and views shared in the Weekly News Report do not necessarily represent ARM’s views. Information in these articles has not been fact-checked by ARM and may contain some errors. ARM is simply compiling all news relevant to migrant communities to inform our advocacy efforts and to facilitate the work of organizations who cater to migrant communities.

Report on Sudanese, Iraqi, Yemeni and Somali Refugees [here]

The Public Source published a report on Sudanese, Iraqi, Yemeni and Somali Refugees whose situation has often been neglected in the humanitarian sector and in the media.

This is reportedly due to shifting the focus and funding to Syrian refugees in Lebanon throughout the past 10 years, and the resulting complications of the Refugee Status Determination  (RSD) process at the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). The RSD process has different implications in terms of aid and procedure, depending on whether or not the person has been recognized as a refugee.

The following numbers were reported:

  • 2,263 Sudanese nationals are registered in Lebanon: 633 are refugees, 1,603 are asylum-seekers, and 5 are“others of concern”

  • 4,392 Iraqis are refugees, 8,249 are asylum-seekers, and 5 are “others of concern”;

  • There are over 150 Yemenis as of 2020: 24 refugees, 130 asylum-seekers, and 5 are “others of concern”;

  • The official figure of Somalis is around 30: 14 are refugees and 9 are asylum-seekers.

 Kawkaba Town to Evict Syrian Residents [here] and [here] 

Lebanese residents of Kawkaba town gave a notice to all 900 Syrian residents to leave following an altercation, and warned landlords against not implementing this decision.

This comes in a context of regular similar decisions to evict all Syrians after a personal dispute.

Report on Vaccine Drive for Migrant Workers [here] 

An article by The National reported on the vaccination drive organized for migrant workers last week by Doctors Without Borders, the International Organization for Migration and the Ministry of Public Health; where migrants could receive the vaccine without necessarily possessing a valid identification document.

Migrants are reportedly being asked for valid identification in walk-in drives and regular appointments, even after it was unofficially communicated that this requirement was no longer a must and that any identification document would work regardless of status.

Another two-day vaccine drive for migrant workers will take place on September 22 and 23. Details will be announced soon.

ARM Talks on Sustaining Feminist Movements in Crises on Kvinna till Kvinna's Podcast [here]

ARM’s Programs Director was hosted on a podcast episode of Kvinna till Kvinna, a feminist funding organization, and discussed the challenges posed by the pandemic and many crises in Lebanon for organizing with migrant domestic workers.

 Qatar Fails to Investigate Deaths of Migrant Workers ahead of World Cup [here] and [here]

Amnesty International released a new report detailing the failure of the Qatari state to investigate the deaths of thousands of migrant workers as well as the insufficient measures to protect them, following the wave of international pressure and campaigns for migrants’ rights ahead of World Cup 2022.

70% of documented deaths are yet to be explained, in the context where the government continuously attributes them to “natural causes”. According to figures by The Guardian, over 6,500 migrant workers died in Qatar over the past 10 years.