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Young Syrian refugee who was deported to Idlib is allowed back into Turkey

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Young Syrian refugee who was deported to Idlib is allowed back into Turkey
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Istanbul governor’s office last week issued a statement ordering Syrian refugees who are not registered in Istanbul to return to the city in which they are registered.

It said the action would be effective as of August 20 but the repercussions of the decision are already being felt by some.

Amjad Tablieh, an 18-year-old Syrian refugee, was stopped by police in Istanbul last weekend for an ID check but didn’t have the identity card issued by the city's authorities with him.

Euronews spoke to his brother Ahmad Tablieh who alleged he was taken instantly taken to a detention centre.

"I left home and took a taxi — it took 20 minutes," Ahmad said. "Even in this short time, they could not wait and transferred him to the Asian part of the city."

He added that he went straight to the centre where his brother was being held and gave the authorities his brother's documents.

Ahmed claimed that he received a call much later from Amjad who said he had been sent back to Syria. The family feared the worst as there are parts of idlib that are particularly dangerous as they are controlled by the militant Al Nusra front.

Istanbul Immigration Department denied the allegations and said that no Syrians are deported back to their country of origin.

Syrians can only be sent to the city in which they are registered in Turkey, it added.

The head of the Istanbul branch of the Human Rights Association (IHD), Gulseren Yoleri, told Euronews that they had recently received information about forced deportations.

"We have received information that the police are doing identity controls on public transport and in front of factories and that the people are being sent directly to the return centres,” she said.

These refugees should, in reality, have the right to oppose this administrative decision but many are not given the chance, Yoleri added.

She also claimed that the officials put pressure on refugees who are caught without identification and being properly registered to sign "voluntary return forms".

Their discourse is: “You might have to wait one year in this detention centre. If you don’t want to wait, sign this document and go back to your country,” Yoleri said.

Since Euronews' interview with Ahmad was recorded, the family say Amjad has been returned to Istanbul and the authorities have said the deportation was a mistake.

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