08 February 2013

Feature: Monitoring Failed Asylum Seekers

Very little information is available about what happens to failed asylum-seekers after they are deported to their countries of origin.  Some may actually have had genuine claims for refugee status but for various reasons (e.g., problematic asylum procedures, poor legal assistance, etc.) were denied; their subsequent deportation could therefore potentially amount to refoulement.  The Post-Deportation Monitoring Network was launched last fall by the Fahamu Refugee Programme as a mechanism for monitoring deportees after their return, to provide assistance and protection, and to document human rights violations.

For more information about the need for such a network, read:
  • "Avoiding Refoulement: The Need to Monitor Deported Failed Asylum Seekers," Oxford Monitor of Forced Migration, vol. 2, no. 2 (Nov. 2012) [text]
  • Monitoring the Unknown: Improving Adherence to the Principle of Non-refoulement through a Proposed 'Monitoring Network', Working Paper, no. 4 (Univ. of Cape Town Refugee Rights Unit, 2012) [text]

Here are a few other related resources that either document mistreatment post-return or discuss policy approaches to take towards asylum-seekers whose claims for asylum have been rejected:

Between a Rock and a Hard Place: The Dilemma Facing Refused Asylum Seekers (Refugee Council, Dec. 2012) [text]

Broken Futures: Young Afghan Asylum Seekers in the UK and on Return to Their Country of Origin, New Issues of Refugee Research, no. 246 (UNHCR, Oct. 2012) [text]

Comparative Study on Best Practices in the Field of Forced Return Monitoring (European Commission, Nov. 2011) [text]

Deported to Danger (Edmund Rice Centre, 2004-2006) [access]
- A research project that investigated the fate of rejected asylum-seekers deported from Australia. Includes link to a documentary called "A Well-Founded Fear."

Following Them Home: The Fate of the Returned Asylum Seekers (Black Inc. Books, 2005) [info]

No Direction Home? The Politics of Return for Refused Asylum Seekers, PAFRAS Briefing Paper no. 8 (PAFRAS, Jan. 2009) [text via Statewatch]

"Nowhere to Run: Iraqi Asylum Seekers in the UK," Race & Class, vol. 54, no. 2 (Oct.-Dec. 2012) [abstract]

The Removal of Failed Asylum Seekers: International Norms and Procedures, New Issues in Refugee Research No. 145 (UNHCR, Dec. 2007) [text]

The Return of Persons Found Not to Be in Need of International Protection to Their Countries of Origin: UNHCR's Role, Protection Policy Paper (UNHCR, Nov. 2010) [text]

Safe Return: How to Improve What Happens When We Refuse People Sanctuary (Independent Asylum Commission, June 2008) [text]

"Uganda: The Silent Practice of Deportations," Pambazuka News, no. 480 (May 2010) [text]

Unsafe Return: Refoulement of Congolese Asylum Seekers (Justice First, Nov. 2011) [text]

Vol sp├ęcial (Fernand Melgar) [info]
- Documentary on the forced deportations of failed asylum-seekers in Switzerland.

For additional information, search in Refworld on, e.g.,  >failed asylum seekers< or >rejected asylum seekers<.

Tagged Publications and Web Sites/Tools.

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