Amnesty International is raising concern about three Syrian asylum-seekers facing imminent deportation from Russia back to their war-ravaged homeland.

A statement by the rights group said the three men were expected to be flown Thursday from a detention center in the city of Makachkala, the capital of Russia's Dagestan region, back to Damascus.

However, a spokeswoman for the Federal Migration Service in Dagestan, Elmira Sheikhova, told The Associated Press that "the process of deportation has been halted." She did not elaborate on why.

An Amnesty researcher in Moscow, Federica Behr, said sending the three back to war-torn Syria would violate the International Refugee Convention.