Since the onset of the Lebanese protest movement in October 2019, the crackdown on human rights in Lebanon has been gradual and indisputable. From the use of lethal force against protesters to allegations of torture, charges of terrorism, intimidation tactics, and increasing restrictions on the freedom of expression, Lebanon’s security forces, judiciary system and non-state actors have been tightening the noose around one of the country’s once celebrated attributes: the strong protection of human rights.
How has the situation evolved on the ground in Lebanon over the past 18 months? What does the impunity in the aftermath of the Beirut port explosion and the potential return of political assassinations foreshadow? How can the international community help avert a dangerous and potentially irreversible deterioration of human rights in Lebanon? How to balance the need for a strong national security backbone with the unconditional protection of individual and collective freedoms?
Lebanon and Bahrain researcher, Human Rights Watch
Advocacy director, Middle East and North Africa, Amnesty International
Senior fellow and director, Conflict Resolution and Track II Dialogues Program, MEI
Christophe Abi-Nassif, moderator
Director, Lebanon program, MEI
Photo by ANWAR AMRO/AFP via Getty Images