Syrian Refugees in Lebanon: Women and Children Being Victimized by Trafficking

Author(s): Maaref Fadel
Final project
Year of publication:
Gender Based Violence
Number of pages:


In 2016, the total number of Syrian refugees in Lebanon topped 1.1 million people. Combined with refuges from Iraq, Palestine, Egypt and other countries, the Lebanon’s population increased 25% that year. Most of the Syrian refugees are women and girls between the ages of 18 and 60 who left to escape the conflict in their home country. Once in Lebanon, the refugees are susceptible to becoming victims of human trafficking. According to the 2015 United Nations Trafficking Protocol, human trafficking does not require movement across borders. Instead, it is broadly defined as “the recruitment, transportation, transfer, harbouring or receipt of persons, by means of the threat or use of force or other forms of coercion, of abduction, of fraud, of deception, of the abuse of power or of a position of vulnerability or of the giving or receiving of payments or benefits to achieve the consent of a person having control over another person, for the purpose of exploitation.” This research looks at the role of both NGOs and the Lebanese government in curbing human trafficking of refugees, specifically through analyzing gaps in the current regulations and sanctions for human trafficking in Lebanon. It presents a case study linking the patriarchal culture in Lebanon to the lack of response against the trafficking of refugee women and girls in the country.