Sep1

Migrant Deaths in the Mediterranean and the Failure of the European Union

September 1, 2021

The EU must move beyond condemnation and develop practical solutions that address the death of migrants in the Mediterranean Sea, in addition to the increasingly inhumane policies implemented by border states.

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Apr12

“They Pretend Not to Hear”: Unpacking the European Union’s Use of Libya as a Transit Country for Refugees

April 12, 2021

Dissecting the migratory practices of the EU reveals how the Global North has implemented a pernicious method of managing refugee migration amidst the chaos of the complex situation in Libya. By engaging hyper-territorial practices, the EU has restrained migrants’ access to their territorial human and civil rights.

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Mar18

RefLaw Primer: Alienage

March 18, 2021

This post explores and defines the alienage requirement of the Refugee Convention's definition of "refugee". What is the element of "alienage"? Where in the Convention is it found? What are the legal and policy rationales behind it?

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Mar18

Introducing the RefLaw Primer Series

March 18, 2021

Over the next few months, RefLaw will be spotlighting a new blog series designed to introduce refugee law to a lay-audience and make this complicated, fascinating area of international law accessible to non-lawyers. These Refugee Law Primers will walk our readers through each element of the definition of “refugee,” as well as common questions and themes in international refugee law and scholarship.

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Jul12

Reforming The Common European Asylum System: Business As Usual?

July 12, 2019

Twenty years ago, the European Council’s session in Tampere set out a roadmap for Europe to establish a Common European Asylum System. In recent years, asylum policy has become a contentious aspect of European Union politics. This article by Dr. Salvatore Nicolosi analyzes these developments in the context of the longer-term goal of creating a uniform recognition of asylum status in the European Union.

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Jun14

The Central American Minors Program, the Administrative Procedure Act, and the International Refugee Convention

June 14, 2019

Domestic advocates have used Administrative Law to frame arguments about the International Refugee Convention. While this has resulted in a victory for those affected by the cancelation of the Central American Minors Program, administrative law cannot provide the same durable and stabilizing humanitarian system that the Convention does.

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Feb22

U.S. Practices Under International Standards: An Interview with Hardy Vieux, Vice President (Legal), Human Rights First

February 22, 2019

On June 29, 2018, RefLaw Writer B.A. Bacigal interviewed Hardy Vieux, vice president (Legal) at Human Rights First (HRF) about his perspective on current issues in refugee and asylum law. What follows is an edited version of that interview. The views and opinions represented are solely Hardy’s and do not necessarily reflect the views of Human Rights First.

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Jan18

Will the Family Unit Remain the “Quintessential” Particular Social Group in the United States?

United States, January 18, 2019

On December 3, 2018, acting U.S. Attorney General Matthew Whitaker certified a Board of Immigration Appeals decision to himself to address the validity of asylum claims based on membership in a family unit. Despite precedent recognizingthe family unit as a valid particular social group, advocates are rightly concerned that the Attorney General may be attempting to undermine this area of U.S. asylum law.

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Dec21

Circular Security: Cameroon’s Return of Nigerian Refugees is Bad Law and Bad Policy

December 21, 2018

Cameroon has taken to expelling refugees seeking relief from violence at the hands of Boko Haram on the pretense of national security, fearing that Boko Haram has infiltrated its borders. Cameroon’s mass expulsions without more process for individuals violates the country’s obligations under the Convention and Protocol Relating to the Status of Refugees. Furthermore, there is little evidence that this policy effectively enhances national or regional security.

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Nov24

Asylum Meters & Bans: Trump’s New Border Regime Violates the United States’ Duties under International Refugee Law

November 24, 2018

The Trump administration is metering the number of individuals who are allowed to enter the United States and apply for asylum at points of entry, and prohibiting anyone who enters unlawfully without inspection from receiving asylum. This new border regime violates the United States' obligations under the 1967 Protocol to not refoul refugees to unsafe countries and not punish refugees for unlawful entrance.

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