Lebanese shipwreck survivor returns home after over 2 months

Hoblos, detained by Syrian authorities, freed today

01 December, 13:26

    (ANSAmed) - BEIRUT, DECEMBER 1 - Lebanon's Fuad Hoblos was one of the few survivors of a shipwreck, two and a half months ago, after a migrant boat capsized off Syria. However, he returned home only today after being detained for more than eight weeks in a Syrian military hospital.

    According to security forces quoted by Lebanese broadcasters, Syrian authorities repatriated Hoblos on Thursday morning. He was on board a boat on September 22 crammed with over 150 Lebanese, Syrian and Palestinian migrants, including many women and children, fleeing towards Italy. Only 12 survived, including six Lebanese, three Palestinians and 12 Syrians, all from areas in Syria and Lebanon that were strongly affected by the unprecedented social and economic crisis that has rocked Lebanon and war-torn Syria. Some of the 12 Syrian survivors were arrested by authorities of Damascus together with Hoblos, who hails from Tripoli, in northern Lebanon. Some of those arrested were subsequently released, others disappeared in Syrian prisons, as reported by the Syrian Observatory for Human Rights.

    According to Lebanese media, Hoblos was previously wanted in Lebanon for "trafficking weapons" and "belonging to radical groups". Media reports said he was able to enter Lebanon though the coastal crossing of Arida, thanks to negotiations conducted by Muslim leaders in Tripoli, in northern Lebanon, and that he is allowed to return home in the countryside west of the city.


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