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Refugees and Internally Displaced Persons

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Presentation on theme: "Refugees and Internally Displaced Persons"— Presentation transcript:

1 Refugees and Internally Displaced Persons
A Brief Survey Phil Orchard PhD Candidate Department of Political Science University of British Columbia

2 Outline Overall Numbers History of Refugees
The Refugee Convention Internally Displaced Persons The Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement


4 Reasons for Refugees The majority of refugee movements are caused by war, ethnic strife, and sharp socioeconomic inequalities.

5 Reasons for Refugees -Push/Pull Factors.
Push factors are generally negative, such as conflict, political instability, social inequalities and poor economic opportunities. Pull factors are generally positive, such as higher standards of living, jobs, or freer communities in country of destination. Most refugee flows are caused by a mixture of both.

6 The Refugee Regime Timeline
1921- Creation of League of Nations High Commissioner for Refugees 1950- Creation of the United Nations High Commission for Refugees 1951- Ratification of the Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees 1967- Protocol Relating to the Status of Refugees

7 The Refugee Convention
The Refugee Regime The Refugee Convention Defined what refugees are as (Article 1): Any person who owing to well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion, is outside the country of his nationality and is unable, or owing to such fear, unwilling to avail himself of the protection of that country; or who, not having a nationality and being outside the country of his former habitual residence as a result of such events, is unable or, owing to such fear, unwilling to return to it.

8 The Refugee Convention
The Refugee Regime The Refugee Convention Establishes the Principle of Non-Refoulment (Article 33)

9 The Refugee Convention
The Refugee Regime The Refugee Convention Also establishes that refugees can not be prosecuted (Article 31)

10 The Refugee Regime Role of UNHCR
UNHCR was founded with a mandate to provide international protection to refugees and seek a permanent solution to the problem in cooperation with national governments.


12 The Refugee Regime

13 Internally Displaced Persons
Are Persons or groups of persons who have been forced or obliged to flee or to leave their homes or places of habitual residence, in particular as a result of or in order to avoid the effects of armed conflict, situations of generalized violence, violations of human rights or natural or human-made disasters, and who have not crossed an internationally recognized State border. United Nations.. Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement. (New York: United Nations Publication E/CN.4/1998/52/Add.2., 1998). 1



16 The Guiding Principles
They consolidate into one document the legal standards relevant to IDPs from international humanitarian and human rights law and analogous refugee law. They also address the gray areas and gaps that have been identified within the law


18 57 countries are sources of significant uprooted populations
world refugee survey 2001

19 94 countries are either producing or hosting significant numbers of uprooted people.
world refugee survey 2001

20 Sources UN High Commission for Refugees:
US Committee for Refugees: Representative of the UN SG on Internal Displacement: Brookings-Bern Project on Internal Displacement: Norwegian Refugee Council Global IDP Project:

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