Rights in Exile Programme

Refugee Legal Aid Information for Lawyers Representing Refugees Globally

Syria - COI

Click here to see the host countries of refugees originating from Syria.

Prof Dawn Chatty

Email: dawn [dot] chattyatqeh [dot] ox [dot] ac [dot] uk
Tel: +44 (0)1 86 52 81 715

Professor Dawn Chatty is a social anthropologist whose ethnographic interests lie in the Middle East, particularly with refugee young people. Dawn is both an academic anthropologist and a practitioner, having carefully developed her career in universities in the United States, Lebanon, Syria and Oman. She was the director of the Refugee Studies Center at the University of Oxford.

Haian Dukhan

Email: hd25atst-andrews [dot] ac [dot] uk

Haian Dukhan is a PhD Candidate at the School of International Relations/Centre for Syrian Studies in St Andrews University. His research interests deal with tribal political systems and social and political exclusion of tribal people in Syria. He is also a disability rights activist who led different disability campaigns in Syria and the UK. Dukhan's fieldwork experience has been largely done in Palmyra, a world heritage city in Syria, where he originally comes from. During the past four years of Dukhan's work on his PhD, he published many papers that were cited in different media outlets like: Tribes and Tribalism in the Syrian Uprising - The Islamic State and the Arab Tribes in Eastern Syria. He also presented his research in different universities and research centres worldwide.

Judge Bruce J Einhorn (ret.) (LGBTI)

Professor of Law, Pepperdine University
Director, Pepperdine Asylum and Refugee Law Clinic
Tel: (310) 506-4416
Of Counsel, Wolfsdorf Immigration Law Group
Tel: (310) 570-4088
Email: bjejudgeataol [dot] com

Judge Einhorn is a member of the ABA National Commission on Immigration and a Lifetime National Commissioner of the Anti-Defamation League. He does extensive work on Egypt, Saudi Arabia (e.g., gays and Shiites there), Syria, Yemen, and Jordan. 

Dr Rebwar Fatah

Email:  rebwaratmideastconsultancy [dot] com  or  infoatmideastconsultancy [dot] com

Dr Rebwar Fatah is the founder and Managing Director of MECS. He has extensive knowledge of the Middle East and North Africa, and of Western involvement in that region. Dr Fatah has been working as a Middle East expert since 2000, and has produced hundreds of reports for court purposes. Dr Fatah's reports have been cited in over two thousand immigration appeals, as well as family and criminal cases in which his expertise has been accepted. A number of media outlets and professional bodies also rely on his opinion, as well as IOM, UNHCR, and national government bodies.

Dr Fatah’s commercial and financial knowledge of the Middle East and the western market, coupled with his deep knowledge of technology and its implementation makes him unique in his field. He regularly visits the Middle East conducting fact-finding missions to ensure that his knowledge is up to date and based on reliable information. Dr Fatah speaks most of the Middle Eastern languages as well as their various dialects.

Dr Fatah’s Country Expert Reports cover a wide range of issues, including general security (examining the actions of state and non-state actors) and sufficiency of protection, crimes of honour, healthcare, corruption, employment markets, and at-risk groups of different sexual, religious, political and cultural profiles.

Dr Shaul Gabbay

Email: gabbayatmuslimworldexpert [dot] com

Dr Shaul Gabbay acts as a resource for immigration attorneys seeking advice, counsel and expert testimony in asylum cases. Formerly the Executive Director of the Institute for the Study of Israel in the Middle East at the University of Denver, he has published extensively on cultures and customs in all Muslim countries, persecution issues based on family dishonor, gender and homosexuality, and sociology and politics of the Muslim world. Professor Gabbay’s expertise helps immigration attorneys and judges understand key societal issues and trends in the Muslim world that have life-threatening repercussions for Muslim immigrants throughout the U.S. at risk of deportation. His oral testimony and written analysis draws on his extensive knowledge and examination of cultural practices in Muslim countries as well as his life experience growing up in the Middle East. More information is on his website  www.muslimworldexpert.com.

Dr Alan George

Email:  arg1atcompuserve [dot] com

Dr George is a consultant, writer and journalist, with extensive knowledge of the Middle East. Since 1984 he has worked as a freelance journalist, researcher and expert witness in political asylum cases involving the Middle East. He frequently commentates on Middle Eastern affairs for radio and television, and contributes to the  Observer , the  Independent  and the  Guardian . He is a former Head of Research at the Arab-British Chamber of Commerce and a former Assistant Director of the Council for the Advancement of Arab-British Understanding (CAABU). Since 2003, Dr George has acted as an Expert Witness for UK, US and European asylum and immigration tribunals, dealing with cases involving Bahrain, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Syria, Jordan, Yemen, Egypt, Libya, Lebanon and the Palestinian territories and has produced some 4,000 reports.

Dr Omar Imady

Email: oi3atst-andrews [dot] ac [dot] uk

Omar Imady received his doctorate in Middle Eastern Studies from the University of Pennsylvania in 1993. His dissertation focused on the institutional evolution of the Islamic reform movement (1871- 1949). Imady’s professional experience combines practical fieldwork in Syria as a UN officer and consultant, academic experience, as an Associate Professor of Middle East Studies, and managerial experience, as Dean of all academic programs at the New York Institute of Technology in Jordan. Imady is the author of various studies and UN reports on Syria and the Middle East. He is also a published poet and novelist and his novel, The Gospel of Damascus, has been translated into several languages. In late 2012, Imady joined the Centre for Syrian Studies (University of St Andrews) as a Senior Fellow, and subsequently, as the Centre’s Deputy Director for Outreach and Information Dissemination. 

Dr George Joffé

Tel: +44 20 76 04 30 27
Email: emailatgeorgejoffe [dot] com / Skype: george.joffe

Professor Joffé is prepared to provide country of origin experts witness statements for Algeria, Bahrain, Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Kuwait, Lebanon, Libya, Morroco, Oman, Palestine, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, Somalia, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia, United Arab Emirates and Yemen. He is now retired but is still affiliated to the London Middle East Institute at the School of Oriental and African Studies in London. Until 2017, Professor Joffé was an affiliated lecturer at the Department of Politics and International Studies (POLIS) in the University of Cambridge, where he also ran the Centre for North African Studies. From 2005 to 2010, he was a research fellow at the Centre of Islamic Studies at the University of Oxford. From 1997 to 2000, Professor Joffé was the deputy-director of the Royal Institute of International Affairs in London. He regularly addresses professional audiences at the NATO Defence College in Rome, the Geneva Centre for Security Policy in Geneva, the Norwegian Foreign Ministry and NOREF in Oslo and the Royal College of Defence Studies in London. He has also advised the European Commission (DG Relex), EuropAid and the new External Action Service.

Riad al Khouri, MLitt (Oxon) 

Email:  ralkhouriatgmail [dot] com 
Tel: +96 27 79 99 50 00 
Skype: riad.al.khouri

A Jordanian economist specializing in the Middle East & North Africa, Riad has for over forty years trained, lectured, advised, and researched on a wide variety of socio-economic and other topics such as good governance, migration (including refugees), foreign aid, human rights, post-crisis economies, strategic planning, cultural familiarization, conflict resolution, NGOs, and sustainable development. His mother tongue is Arabic, and he is also fluent in English, with a strong working knowledge of French. Riad lives in Jordan and is a leading expert on the country and MENA generally, working locally and around the region at all levels with numerous Jordanian and international organizations, and writing and publishing widely on the country as well as regionally. . He maintains cordial relations with different parties in the current Syrian conflict.

Thomas McGee

Email: thomas [dot] mcgeeatcantab [dot] net

Telephone number: +44 75 94 70 42 72 
Website: https://law.unimelb.edu.au/students/grd/students/thomas-mcgee 
Twitter page: @ThMcGee

Thomas McGee (BA Cantab; MA Exon) is an expert on stateless Kurds of Syria, and authentication of documents related to stateless Kurds (ajanib & maktumeen). He speaks Arabic and Kurdish (Kurmanci dialect). Thomas is currently a PhD Researcher at Melbourne Law School’s Peter McMullin Centre on Statelessness.