Boat with 8 Syrians capsizes off Lebanese coast; 5 missing

A fishing boat that was illegally carrying eight Syrian refugees to the Mediterranean island of Cyprus capsized on Monday. (File/AFP)
Updated 13 May 2019
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Boat with 8 Syrians capsizes off Lebanese coast; 5 missing

BEIRUT: Lebanon’s state-run National News Agency says a fishing boat that was illegally carrying eight Syrian refugees to the Mediterranean island of Cyprus has capsized.
The report says the incident occurred on Monday off the northern Lebanese town of Chekka. It says that Lebanon’s navy detained three of the Syrians when they returned to the coast and that the other five are still missing.
Lebanon is host to the highest number of refugees per capita in the world, with about 1 million Syrians — or nearly a quarter of the small Arab country’s population.
In September, a child drowned after a boat carrying 39 migrants hoping to reach Cyprus capsized off the northern Lebanese coast.


Syrian journalist claims torture, humiliation at hands of Turkish forces while crossing border

Updated 47 min 31 sec ago
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Syrian journalist claims torture, humiliation at hands of Turkish forces while crossing border

  • According to Al-Shami in his video, he was arrested with two of his children
  • 419 Syrian civilians – among them 75 children and 38 women – have been killed trying to cross the border since conflict began

LONDON: A Syrian journalist has claimed on his YouTube channel that he has been assaulted and beaten by Turkish forces on the Syria-Turkey border.
Mazen Al-Shami posted a video to the social media network and also posted on Facebook, saying: “After nine years of the revolution, that is how my family and I are treated.
“A Turkish officer tortured me in front of my family and tortured my children on the Syria-Turkey border, it was his reaction when he found out I was a Syrian journalist.”
Al-Shami ended the post with the hashtags #Thank_You_Turkey and #Thank_You_Hotel_Opposition with a number of photos containing the injuries sustained by him and his son as a result of the assault.
According to Al-Shami in his video, he was arrested with two of his children along with other civilians as they tried to cross the border into Turkey from the Syrian Idlib region.
The Association of Syrian Journalists, which represents journalists opposed to the Bashar Assad regime, quoted Al-Shami as saying: “The opposition did not respond to my request to enter Turkey for a follow-up to my medical treatment.”
The association added that Al-Shami was beaten and severely tortured with “metal rods, iron chains and agricultural hand tools.”
Hundreds of Syrian activists have responded to the incident, saying the officer responsible must be held accountable and that the Turkish army is constantly targeting civilians trying to cross the border from Syria.
In a recent report, the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights confirmed that 419 Syrian civilians – among them 75 children and 38 women – have been killed trying to cross the border since the start of the country’s ongoing conflict.