Manual Refugees, Race and the Concept of Asylum

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The IRB is an independent board that makes decisions on immigration and refugee matters. The IRB decides who is a Convention refugee or a person in need of protection. Convention refugees are outside their home country or the country they normally live in.

This is because, if they return, they may face. The IRB website has more information on making an asylum claim in Canada. Canada has an agreement with the US that says people who want to make a refugee claim must do so in the first safe country they arrive in. In some cases, this rule does not apply for example, if you have family in Canada. You will not receive a reply. Skip to main content Skip to "About government".

About the process 2. Who can apply 3. How to apply 4. After you apply Protect yourself from fraud. They also blamed the media and politicians for creating ill-feeling amongst local residents by reinforcing the view that many of the refugees were bogus. In the United Kingdom, a report by the European Commission against Racism and Intolerance found that public statements depicting asylum seekers in a negative way, often as a threat to security, economic stability and social peace, have contributed to a climate in which episodes of racial attacks and harassment against asylum seekers, most notably Roma, have increased.

In May , after the extension of the U. Race Relations Act to cover immigration officers, the U. Home Office gave immigration officers permission to discriminate against a named list of ethnic groups, including Tamils, Kurds, Pontic Greeks, Roma, Somalis, Albanians, Afghans and ethnic Chinese.

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Right of asylum

The Home Office justified the decision, stating that it was recognized that it was necessary to discriminate on the grounds of nationality or ethnic origin. Officials argued that the move was not a matter of race but of nationality and ethnic origin. In July , the U. Human Rights Committee criticized Australia for its mandatory detention policies and for not informing, nor allowing, NGOs access to inform detainees of their right to seek legal advice.

Asylum seekers were kept in remote detention centers thousands of miles away from any major city.

In various inflammatory and xenophobic statements on asylum and immigration in Australia between November and August , the Minister for Immigration and Multicultural Affairs, Phillip Ruddock, stated interalia: that mandatory detention policies protected the Australian public against communicable diseases brought in by illegals; that chemical injections for detainees needed to be more comprehensively implemented to prevent disturbances in immigration detention centers; and that whole villages of Iraqis and people from neighboring countries were packing up in preparation for illegal travel to Australia.

In Guinea, President Lansana Conte made a series of inflammatory public speeches in September and October in which he indiscriminately blamed refugees for the growing insecurity and called on the Guinean population to defend their country against foreign invasions. Conte's speech precipitated widespread attacks by police, soldiers, and civilian militias against thousands of refugees in the camps and in the capital Conakry, resulting in the arbitrary arrest, detention and beatings of thousands of refugees and the rape, including gang rape, of dozens of women.

Following the bombings in Moscow in September , city and regional officials implemented a widespread and systematic repression of suspected migrants from the Caucasus. Newcomers were ordered to re-register and most non-Russians were rejected, many of them ethnic Chechens.

Addressing prejudice at the frontline

Citing security concerns, Moscow city police also rounded up more than 20, non-Moscovite minorities and expelled thousands from the city. A campaign of fear followed including residential raids, arbitrary identity checks on the street, detention, and violence. In February , Bangladeshi officials expelled undocumented Rohingya families after villagers claimed that they were taking their jobs. Human Rights Watch learnt that community leaders in the slums around Cox's Bazar were instructed to identify those Rohingya families and homes in their respective communities and to submit lists of their names to the authorities.

States should recognize that discrimination against refugees, asylum seekers, migrants, and internally displaced persons is a contemporary form of racism. Governments and regional bodies should take steps to reverse policies and practices that discriminate against refugees, asylum seekers, and migrants; reinforce the existing international refugee protection regime; and introduce new protection standards where necessary.

What's the difference between a refugee and an asylum seeker?

All states should ratify and fully implement the Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees and the Protocol and ensure that these instruments are applied to all asylum seekers and refugees without discrimination. Those states that have maintained a geographical limitation incompatible with the non- discriminatory intention of the Protocol should withdraw it. The fundamental principles of non-refoulement and non-discrimination enshrined in these international instruments should be scrupulously observed.

In particular governments should not return asylum seekers to so-called "safe third countries" where they may be at risk of direct or indirect refoulement, or other serious human rights violations. States should immediately cease the discriminatory practice of excluding asylum seekers on the basis of their country of origin without a serious consideration of their asylum claim.

Such practices could result in returning refugees to countries where they may face persecution, torture, and even death. States should ensure that they respond urgently, effectively, and without discrimination to situations of mass displacement and humanitarian crises regardless of geographical proximity or political interests. States should take urgent action to address the needs of the 25 to 30 million internally displaced persons worldwide. In particular, states should apply the Guiding Principles on Internal Displacement, particularly those provisions relating to non-discrimination.

States should take immediate steps to reverse asylum and immigration policies and directives that discriminate on the basis of race, nationality, and ethnicity. In particular, policies such as visa requirements for nationals of common refugee producing countries, carrier sanctions, the posting of immigration officials in countries of origin, pre-departure immigration checks, and mandatory detention policies should be scrupulously evaluated to ensure that they do not discriminate on the grounds of race, nationality or ethnicity. States should ensure that they respond effectively to and fully investigate all incidents of racial and related violence against migrants, asylum seekers and refugees; that they provide compensation and redress to the victims; and take active measures to arrest and prosecute the perpetrators.

Governments and public officials should avoid the direct or indirect use of language that may contribute to a hostile environment within which racism, xenophobia and related intolerance against refugees, asylum seekers and migrants flourish and acts of racist violence are rationalized; they should counteract inaccurate, racist and xenophobic stereotypes of refugees, asylum seekers and migrants in the media; and encourage informed public debate on asylum and immigration matters.

Refugees, Asylum seekers, Migrants and Internally Displaced Persons Throughout the world, refugees, asylum seekers, migrants and internally displaced persons are the victims of racial discrimination, racist attacks, xenophobia and ethnic intolerance. The situation Racism as a root cause of forcible displacement In countries such as Burundi, Burma, Bhutan, Indonesia, Sri Lanka, Turkey, and the former Yugoslavia millions of people have been forced to flee their homes as a result of ethnic violence, racism, racial discrimination, and intolerance.

Racism in host countries Border closures Increasingly, refugees who flee situations of ethnic intolerance and violence are unable to find safe refuge in neighboring countries. Fortress Europe The smaller numbers of refugees who arrive in the industrialized states of Western Europe, the United States, and Australia face an equally hostile welcome. Barriers to entry The imposition of strict visa requirements for nationals of common refugee-producing countries, many of which have well-documented human rights problems, such as China, Burma, Sudan, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Sierra Leone, Turkmenistan, and Rwanda make it almost impossible for refugees fleeing these countries to travel legally to the European Union.

Detention of asylum seekers and migrants Those asylum seekers and migrants who manage to evade pre-departure border controls face punitive measures on arrival. Human trafficking and smuggling The growing barriers to legal entry into E. Xenophobia and racism in the public domain Restrictive immigration policies are implemented within a climate of hostility and xenophobia towards refugees, asylum seekers, and migrants. Racism as an obstacle to solving refugee crises Racism and ethnic intolerance continue to prevent refugees from exercising their right to return to their countries or places of origin.


  • Refugees, Racism and Xenophobia: What Works to Reduce Discrimination?.
  • What is a Refugee? Definition and Meaning | USA for UNHCR;
  • Asylum Law and Procedure.

Disparity in the international response There is gross regional disparity in the international response to refugee crises. Recent developments The Refugee Convention In July the international community marked the 50 th anniversary of the Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees and its Protocol. Developments in the United Kingdom A Kurdish refugee from Turkey was stabbed to death in an unprovoked racist attack, and an Iranian asylum seeker seriously injured in a subsequent stabbing attack on a deprived inner-city housing estate in Glasgow, Scotland in August Developments in Australia In July , the U.

Developments in Guinea In Guinea, President Lansana Conte made a series of inflammatory public speeches in September and October in which he indiscriminately blamed refugees for the growing insecurity and called on the Guinean population to defend their country against foreign invasions.


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  7. Developments in the Russian Federation Following the bombings in Moscow in September , city and regional officials implemented a widespread and systematic repression of suspected migrants from the Caucasus.