Asylum

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Generous, but Equal Treatment? Anti-Discrimination Duties of States Hosting Refugees Fleeing Ukraine

More than 5 million refugees have recently fled Ukraine, the fastest-growing mass displacement in this century. About a quarter of Ukraine’s population and half of its children have fled their homes. The European Union (EU) responded with a first-time activation of the Temporary Protection Directive (TPD). Lurking behind tremendous generosity, States have treated arrivals from Ukraine differently than other recent flows of forced migrants and have also treated some fleeing Ukraine differently than others. Although differential treatment is not always discriminatory under human rights law, some State responses to the current crisis arguably have been. Fortunately, the law creates myriad ways to challenge these violations. Using this law in the courts, we argue, could foster better protection of refugees and other migrants in the current crisis and in the future, strengthening non-discrimination’s rightful place as a key tool for advancing the rights of people crossing borders. We have identified three contexts in which discriminatory treatment has emerged, or likely will, in the course of mass displacement from Ukraine: (i)…

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Pushbacks and Lawlessness

Dozens of cases before the European Court of Human Rights claim that Greek authorities are engaged in a policy of secret returns of persons seeking asylum back to Turkey, or ‘pushbacks’. Α post on this blog, ‘Pushbacks as Euphemism’ by Niamh Keady-Tabbai and Itamar Mann drew attenttion to the alleged ‘driftbacks’ in the Aegean. These, however,…

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The Nationality and Borders Bill: Closing Space for Humanitarian Assistance at Sea

On 6 July 2021, the UK Government published the Nationality and Borders Bill, Bill 14 of 2021-22. Secretary of State for the Home Department Priti Patel, who sponsors the Bill, described its motivation as follows: The British people have had enough of open borders and uncontrolled immigration; enough of a failed asylum system…

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The New Palestinian Refugees

According to numbers The Guardian published on May 17, 2021, the current Israeli attack on Gaza has killed 200 Palestinians, including 59 children. 34,000 have been displaced from their homes. It is hard to assess the accuracy of these numbers. Very likely, the death toll will be higher: the violence has not ebbed, and bodies…

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Non-refoulement During a Health Emergency

The rapid spread of the COVID-19 virus worldwide has sparked continuous scientific debates about the impact of the health emergency and its legal implications. In an attempt to expand this growing debate, this short post aims to shed some light on the impact this emergency is having on asylum seekers and, therefore, to examine the possible tensions…

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