A Syrian migrant has been confined to a Turkish airport over the past year, not allowed to enter the country and “at continued risk” of being deported back to his war-torn homeland, Amnesty International said in a statement Wednesday.
Fadi Mansour said he longs to sleep in a dark room and on Wednesday posted a photo of his one-year anniversary meal, an airport hamburger.
It is lunch time, please come and share my one-year daily dish pic.twitter.com/jO5rV7knhx— Fadi Mansour (@Fadimans0ur) March 16, 2016
Amnesty International has appealed for his release, saying he has been “arbitrarily detained in inhumane conditions” at Istanbul’s Ataturk Airport since March 15 last year.
“One year is enough. I need my freedom,” Mansour wrote on a notebook he held for another photo.
Mansour told Amnesty that his "only dream right now ... is to sleep with the lights off."
According to the human rights group, Mansour has been held in the airport’s “Problematic Passengers Room” for a year, save for an attempted trip in November to Lebanon which did not grant him entry, resulting in his being put on a flight back to Turkey.
“The ‘Problematic Passengers Room’ has no natural light and artificial lighting is kept on at all times. There are no beds or any privacy. Being confined in such a space for an extended period of time — in this case approximately one year — may amount to cruel, inhuman or degrading treatment, prohibited under domestic and international law,” Amnesty said in a statement.
Mansour fled Syria in 2012 to Lebanon and then Turkey to avoid serving in the military, according to Amnesty. He traveled to Malaysia where he was denied entry and returned to Istanbul last March when he was detained at the airport, the rights group said.
Amnesty noted that his lawyer applied to Turkish authorities for his release, but no decision has been made.