As a recognized establishment, the Salam Abdul Samad Law Firm is dedicated to a variety of national as well as international issues. One of the many significant issues is the question of Palestinian immigration with emphasis on how to advance and protect their refugee rights in Lebanon.
Hence, our firm continues to be active in dealing with refugee rights. Most recently the Salam Abdul Samad Law Firm participated in the Norwegian Refugee Council’s (NRC) conference regarding challenges facing Palestinian refugees’ ban on real estate ownership in Lebanon. Our experience made at the NRC conference is partly reflected here. The meeting raised important questions and problems at hand while creating debate among the participants on refugee rights and the advancement thereof. For further details on the conference, please view the PDF file attached in the final section of the report.
1- NRC Introduction
After a brief welcome speech made by the NRC team on behalf of the Legal Aid Network and its members, Dr. Khalil Al Dahdah was invited up to present to everyone participating in the situation facing Palestinian refugees regarding their ban on real estate ownership in Lebanon. All attendants were provided with a legal handbook on real estate rights in Lebanon and the workings of NRC.
The opening presentation included information about:
. The importance of maintaining universal civic rights
. Facts about Palestinian presence in Lebanon
. Briefing of the law acquiring real estate rights for non-Lebanese in Lebanon
. The Legal Aid Network: Main objectives and aims
2- Aim of the Report
To examine the different attitudes towards immigration from A Human Rights perspective.
To promote and advance Human Rights issues within the legal sphere.
To compare the attitude towards immigration which we encountered at the meeting with the attitudes our firm has become familiar with in Scandinavian countries and their relation to Human Rights.
3-The Objective of The Conference
The firm’s role was to attend the meeting with the objective to observe the manner of debate about the challenges facing Palestinian refugees.
The Palestinian situation in Lebanon is one of great controversy, thus we expected a discussion that reflected the wide range of attitudes to capture the tension surrounding this topic.
4- Observations and Data Collected
The legal issue inherent in the Palestinian situation was clearly presented throughout the lectures.
The discussion which followed similarly raised the notions on immigration that our firm had encountered before in Scandinavian countries. These include concerns such as preserving national identity and culture, protection of jobs amidst national economic challenges as well as the economic and institutional burden of assisting Palestinian immigrants in Lebanon.
5- Main points and Recommendations
This NRC conference displayed that the debate regarding civil and human rights is an Ongoing issue in certain circles of the judicial branch as well as civil society in Lebanon.
Such debates among similar groups are given more attention through media coverage in Scandinavia and thus more visible, the NRC meeting reflected a step towards a more flourishing civil society in Lebanon.
One could recommend that grass-root organizations such as the NRC to take a greater initiative to promote and organize similar events but to a greater audience.
The Palestinian immigration and their civil rights in Lebanon stands as a significant issue at hand which the NRC has successfully raised through mediation. Similarly, the Salam Abdul Samad Law Firm shall stay engaged with the issue facing Palestinian refugees regarding their ban on real estate ownership in Lebanon. We realize that instruments such as mediation through legal branches, public spheres, and the media are significant means to keep pressure and emphasis on the issue at hand.
The Salam Abdul Samad Law Firm will continue to work with this vital issue in the future and is prepared to make further contributions to the Palestinian immigration case in Lebanon.
A comparative study between Lebanon and Scandinavian countries
At Salam Abdul Samad Law Firm we seek to look beyond our own national borders and especially towards Scandinavia for comparison and debate because of the region’s renowned accomplishments with civil society development and -inclusion. Therefore, the educational background and experience with the Danish Human Rights situation of our partner abroad can enable our firm to make an interesting comparison of Lebanese governance and civil society efforts.
A- On Governance and Human Rights Principles
Among various objectives, the Salam Abdul Samad Law Firm is dedicated to examen the character of Lebanese governance and their advancement of Human Rights. Our firm believes that one of the most interesting ways to do so is through comparative research. On this basis, our firm decided to collaborate on an international basis with partners abroad. One of these has been FadiDaouk, a member of the Salam Abdul Samad Law Firm who was active in promoting the Lebanese situation through a comparison to the Danish model for governance in the field of HR.
Denmark was selected on the basis of the significant accomplishments made by Scandinavian countries in the field of civil society development. Partners such as Fadi Daouk offered our firm a significant opportunity to gain insight into the culture of CSOs in Denmark and was thus of great interest to our firm’s objective in promoting Human Rights issues internationally.
By employing this comparative perspective, The slam Abdul Samad Law firm aims to:
1. Exemplify to what extent there is a difference in the ways in which governments have developed and carried out their responsibilities towards their citizens.
2. Show the governance and the manners of promoting particular principles are far from similar. This is most clear when looking into principles such as Human Rights which are supposed to be universal in nature and practice.
This tab will present the findings our firm has made through the research represented by FadiDaouk. Our findings consist of qualitative research, field studies, and reports.
B- Human Rights Initiatives and Situations
Governance and development as reflected in the field of HR protection in Lebanon are significant when comparing it to the Danish case.
Whereas Lebanon faces challenges in terms of state legitimacy in national affairs, the danish government displays a more secure relationship between its citizens and itself. For instance, Lebanon can be considered as undergoing a detrimental process for its legal independence in the sense that a politicization of the judicial branch continues to occur such dependence between the political and judicial branches of government is, on the other hand, not visible in the Danish manner of governance. It can be argued that this judicial independence in government provides better grounds for the prosecution and protection against HR violations.
There has been a long tradition for the protection and advancement of Human Rights in danish politics. Progress within the field of HR has advanced Denmark on specific areas of action.
These include freedom of speech, freedom of religion, racism, children’s rights, disability rights, torture, Human Rights defenders, and the latest phenomena known as corporate social responsibility (CSR. (
In this sense, Denmark has shown a more noteworthy and diverse capacity in governance to advance efforts in HR protection.
Domingo, Pilar ”Judicialization of politics or politicization of the judiciary? Recent trends in Latin America” Recent trends in Latin America, Democratization, 11:1, 104-126, 2010