We intend to be the platform that educates individuals on the subject of International Parental Child Abduction, and grow our circle of social advocates to stand in solidarity with left-behind parents.
We are the voice of those parents and families affected by such crimes.
We aim to engage all individuals and/or institutions in our mission steps, and open their eyes to cases that have been disregarded for so long.
We believe that by increasing the knowledge of diversified actors, hand-in-hand, our voices can be heard. We would be able to help in bringing an abducted child home and end the suffering of their family.
The road to returning a child to his rightful custodian is long and bumpy, but with the support of the community and local actors, we can bring HOPE to the hearts of affected families
We agree that not all endings are meant to be happy, but our duty is to fight injustice; to fight for a right that has been violated, and to ensure the safe return of a child home.

What is International Parental Child Abduction (IPCA)?
International Parental Child Abduction is the removal or retention of a child outside their country of habitual residence in breach of another parent or guardian’s custody rights. It’s based on the intention of one of the parents to forbid the other from any form of contact with their child due to marital disputes.
Often during divorce, children pay the ultimate price. A child deserves to grow up with both his/her parents.
In most cases, parents gain shared custody rights. In others, it is perceived as best interest of the child for one of the parents to gain sole custody; regardless of that, the other parent still has visitation rights.
From a legal perspective, regardless the scenario, all three parties have rights, and violating either one of them is a crime.
With the occurrence of the first Parental Child Abduction crime, there was basically no actual legal framework governing it. It was, more or less, an experimental era for this new phenomenon; and with that, new laws started emerging in an attempt to hinder the act of Parental Child Abduction. Although many were thought to be effective at the time, these laws were the contrary.
Parental kidnapping increased at an alarming rate, and enhancement of those laws were sought. National laws were issued, and international treaties between pertinent parties came to life.
The most effective treaty being applied to this day is the Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction of October 1980.

The expansion of the HCCH accelerated throughout the 1980s and 1990s This was a reflection of the increased interest in HCCH Conventions from across the globe and was an important part of the Organization’s transformation into a global intergovernmental organization.
Click to see more on the history of the HCCH Conventions.

The Hague Convention on the Civil Aspects of International Child Abduction of October 1980
A multilateral treaty, which seeks to protect children from the harmful effects of wrongful removal and retention across international boundaries by providing a procedure to bring about their prompt return and ensuring the protection of rights of access.
Click to see more on HCCH information and implementation

Laws that govern Human Rights & IPCA
Despite the existence of an international legal framework to prevent such outcomes, many cases of parental abduction are still ongoing in national courts around the world.
iHOPE’s Legal & Strategic Research Office has conducted assessments and proposed several adequate solutions in regards to this issue.
Click here to view iHOPE’s Legal Researches


Origin of the name:
In reference to Papinian, a Phoenician Roman jurist and professor, who taught at Berytus School of Law and Jurisprudence during the rule of the Roman Empire. His work attained the highest authority and is regarded today as among the principal Roman contributions to the foundation of modern law.
We chose this name because we believe it resembles the evolution of Law. Since Papinian was a pioneer in this field, we aim for the Clinic to serve as the starting point for the evolution of regulations in Lebanon. With it, we aim to enhance the application and implementation of the regulations in accordance with leading International Laws concerning Human Rights, with a particular focus on Women and Children Rights.

Objectives of the Legal Clinic:
This program aims to support marginalized individuals in Lebanon. With women and children being wrongfully disregarded in Tripoli, Lebanon and in most of the MENA Region, our attention is currently focused on offering legal protection to women and children by preserving their rights by:

  • • Achieving the highest level of women and children’s rights protection possible in North Lebanon by:
    - Striving to ensure the security and presence of women and children in adequate environments.
    - Providing legal education on rights and obligations.
  • • Fortifying women and children rights legally by:
    - Creating new precedents in Civil and Sharia lawsuits.
    - Presenting Bills to the Parliament to enhance the Lebanese Legislation.
  • • Advocating on behalf of marginalized groups by:
    - Legally representing victims in Civil and Shari Courts.
    - Spreading awareness concerning pressing matters of right violations.
  • • Aiding left-behind parents in cases of Domestic and International Parental Child Abduction:
    - Enhancing defense mechanisms used in resolving cases.
    - Advocating socially and legally for the victims of this crime.
    - Improving legislation and laws to comply with international regulations without violating public order.
    - Establishing centers to secure visitation rights, in cooperation with Shari Courts, for parents, particularly refugees and homeless individuals, to spend time with their children in a safe environment.
    - Limiting the expenses of the lawsuits, and encouraging the legal training of Law students on cases of parental child abduction, by involving law students in pro-bono abduction cases

Services of the Legal Clinic:

  • • Legal Services:
    - File and follow up on lawsuits and cases before Shari and Civil Courts.
    - Apply for interim and precautionary measures.
    - Provide legal consultation.
  • • Social Services:
    - Follow up on regular international updates concerning women and children rights.
    - Establishing partnerships with:
    Tripoli Bar Association to conduct training workshops for lawyers on modern and effective legal methods.
    Law schools in Lebanon and the entire MENA region, to train students on handling various cases pro-bono.
    - Spread awareness by:
    Launching campaigns.
    Publishing analytical research to enhance our approach on right protection.
    Publish a quarterly International Newsletter to shed light to pressing matters.


As part of our duty to preserve Human Rights, and our tireless efforts in the field of Child Protection and social inclusion, iHOPE has initiated a program specific to non-registered individuals.
The emphasis of this program is going to be on individuals lacking legal identity, from locals, refugees and immigrants in general, with a particular focus on Syrian groups.
Currently, one of the most pressing challenges facing immigrants and refugees is obtaining a legal identity; particularly in Lebanon and the MENA region. Birth registration is one of the most imperative procedures for obtaining a legal identity, and failure to do so places the child outside the framework of legal protection at both the local and international levels, with serious long-term consequences for the host countries and the international community.
The vast majority of refugees and immigrants fled war or unbearable circumstances in their home countries, and live in Lebanese regions with significant levels of poverty. Many of them have been born on foreign land, in which they know little of its culture, language and legal formalities, rendering them unable to registered their children and in even more complex situations.
With the lack of effective national laws to regulate this problem, iHOPE’s Legal Research and Studies Unit conducted thorough assessments to recognize the core of this issue and proposed an effective solution.
Please visit our Research & Studies section to read our proposed enhancements for a better future.
In aid of our fellow advocates and organizations that have taken it upon themselves to support in this current situation, iHOPE aims to:
- Conduct updated through legal assessments in order to enhance the status of invisible people.
- Provide individuals with legal education.
- Conduct workshops, in cooperation with local and international partners, to empower individuals and help them acquire skillsets that would aid in their civic engagement to become effective members of the community.
We hope that with the support of pertinent actors, we can achieve the ultimate goal of protecting and preserving the rights of invisible people in Lebanon and the MENA region.


In effort to help children and youth develop positive self-images, friendship and social skills, problem-solving, and respect for others, iHOPE is launching a program for Child & Youth Inclusion in cooperation with local and international partners. This program intends to help marginalized children and youth engage in social life starting from a safe environment that helps build their character and skills.
Many children and youth in Lebanon are deprived of their childhood due to the economic status or lack of awareness of their parents. These children are forced to work to provide for their families, which is in direct violation of their rights and innocence, according to the Lebanese Labor law. iHOPE aims to provide young individuals a chance to grow and become effective members of the community. In cooperation with pertinent actors, iHOPE is creating this program to help children and youth acquire the right skillset while preserving their rights.
The goal is to help them through psycho-social rehabilitation, advocacy, and empowerment. This program aims to follow up with children and youth until they are of age, maturity, and required skillset to engage with the community.