Asylum seekers and refugees essays

As exemplified earlier, human rights law plays a crucial role by filling the procedural gap of the Geneva Convention. These guarantees are further strengthened when asylum seekers are deprived of their liberty during the asylum procedure or pending their removal. Article 31(2) of the Geneva Convention addresses this issue in general and arguably vague terms. While permitting states to apply some restrictions to the movement of asylum seekers, any restrictions must fulfil two conditions: they must be ‘necessary and such restrictions shall only be applied until their status in the country is regularized or they obtain admission into another country’. Considerable detail has been added to these general guidelines by human rights law regarding the grounds of detention, its legal basis, and other related procedural guarantees.

Immigration controls, Asylum seekers and refugees …

Essays on refugees and asylum seekers Essay Academic Service

Asylum seekers and refugees essay

() See in particular: Agreement relating to Refugee Seamen, 23 November 1957, completed by the Protocol to the Agreement relating to Refugee Seamen of 12 June 1973, Art. 10; Organization of African Unity Convention Governing the Specific Aspects of Refugee Problems in Africa, 10 September 1969, Art. II(3); Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children, supplementing the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime, 15 November 2000, Art. 14(1); Protocol against the Smuggling of Migrants by Land, Sea and Air, supplementing the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime, 15 November 2000; 2004 Qualification Directive, Recital 2 and Art. 21; Council Directive 2005/85/EC, OJ 2005 L 326/13 of 1 December 2005 on minimum standards on procedures in Member States for granting and withdrawing refugee status, Recital 2 and Art. 20(2); Council of Europe Convention on Action against Trafficking in Human Beings, 16 May 2005, Art. 40(4). Among soft law instruments, besides a wide number of resolutions from the General Assembly and the UNHCR ExCom, see, most notably, Declaration on Territorial Asylum, 14 December 1967, Art. 3(1); Resolution (67) 14 of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe on Asylum to persons in Danger of Persecution, 1967; Cartagena Declaration on Refugees, 22 November 1984.

Essays on refugees and asylum seekers / Term paper Help

Twenty years ago, Aleinikoff reminded us that ‘refugee lawyers must be human rights lawyers’. Refugee lawyers are clearly on the right path and they have made substantial steps forward during the last decades. But there are still some obstacles to overcome before they will truly become human rights lawyers. The last step is perhaps the most difficult one. It requires a cultural revolution in the profession, not only in recognizing the centrality of human rights law, but also by accepting all its consequences. While the fetishism of the Geneva Convention is no longer tenable, human rights law requires a holistic approach of refugee protection. This may ultimately revive the ancestral function to asylum: asylum is not only an act of protection; it is also an act of affirmation against another subject of law which is deemed unable to hold its primary function. In essence, granting asylum reflects the judgment that the state of origin has failed to fulfil its duty of protection and has, accordingly, lost its legitimacy.

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While the added value of the Geneva Convention has been largely neutralized by the subsequent interpretation of the ICCPR, the latter instrument offers more comprehensive protection in both personal and material scope. Its personal scope not only includes refugees, but also asylum seekers and any other persons in need of protection. Provisions in both the Geneva Convention and the ICCPR nevertheless subordinate their applicability to those who are ‘lawfully’ within the territory of the state concerned. The Human Rights Committee has underlined, on this last requirement:

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The primary reason for this cross-fertilization process can be found in the very existence of the human rights treaty bodies. They have played a decisive role in the propagation of human rights law within refugee law. Obviously this does not mean that there is a hierarchical relation between the two branches, since each regime retains its conventional autonomy. Human rights treaty bodies have constantly reiterated that ‘it is not [their] function to examine asylum claims or to monitor the performance of Contracting States with regard to their observance of their obligations under the Geneva Convention on Refugees’. However, from the perspective of the content of their respective norms, the border between the two regimes has been steadily blurred. Both in substance and essence, treaty bodies have—whether consciously or not—counterbalanced the normative and institutional weaknesses of the Geneva Convention.