21 June 2006

Summer Schedule

Summer invariably means less time at the computer! Postings to this blog will therefore be less frequent through August, but do check in every now and then - new information resources will continue to be highlighted as they are discovered.

20 June 2006

World Urban Forum: Forced Evictions & Homelessness

The Special Rapporteur on adequate housing as a component of the right to an adequate standard of living, Miloon Kothari, spoke at the World Urban Forum today. The press release announcing his speech notes the following:

Figures show that annually there are more people displaced and forced into homelessness and inadequate housing living conditions due to development projects than due to armed and ethnic conflict. And yet, such forced evictions, prima facie violations of a range of recognized human rights, continue to take place with impunity and rare, if any, reaction by the international community.

The press release is available here and his statement to the forum is here. More information about the work of the Special Rapporteur is available here.

Posted in Publications and Events.

World Refugee Day, June 20th

Today is World Refugee Day, established to honor the "spirit and courage" of refugees and to express our solidarity for them. This year's theme is "Keeping the Flame of Hope Alive." UNHCR's event page provides an introduction to the theme, messages from leaders of the international community, and a listing of activities around the world.

Refugee Week UK runs from 19 to 25 June. For more information about special events, please visit the site set up by a partnership of UK-based humanitarian agencies.

Posted in Events.

15 June 2006

New Periodical Issues: IJMED, NICS, RLN News, RSQ

International Journal of Mass Emergencies and Disasters, vol. 24, no. 1 (March 2006) [contents]

Nutrition Information in Crisis Situations, vol. 9 (May 2006) [PDF text] [HTML text]

Refugee Livelihoods Network Newsletter (May 2006) [text]
- Final issue of the newsletter, and completion of the Refugee Livelihoods Network project.

Refugee Survey Quarterly, vol. 25, no. 2 (2006) [contents]
- This issue of RSQ focuses on refugee/IDP livelihoods.

Posted in Periodicals.

14 June 2006

World Refugee Survey 2006: Rights and Risks

The 2006 edition of the World Refugee Survey was released today. It includes essays and analysis on Katrina "refugees," refugee warehousing, refugee protest in the South, and internal displacement in 2005. Also provided are statistics for refugees and IDPs and refugee rights "grades" for host countries. Country profiles are eventually incorporated into the "refugee conditions by country" feature on the U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants' web site. Earlier editions of the Survey dating to 2003 are also available.

Posted in Publications.

Internet Detective

The Internet Detective is an online tutorial designed to teach college students to think more critically about how to undertake research on the Internet. It takes around an hour to complete and its five sections focus on objectives of the tutorial, information quality, evaluating information, practical search exercises, and legal aspects of online research.

Other online tutorials focusing on particular subject areas are available here.

Posted in Web Sites/Tools.

09 June 2006

UNHCR Glossary

UNHCR's Status Determination and Protection Information Section, within the Division of International Protection, has produced a Master Glossary of Terms (June 2006). This is a revised compilation of the terms most commonly used in a variety of UNHCR protection-related publications. It also incorporates terms from OCHA's Glossary of Humanitarian Terms (2003).

Glossaries/dictionaries that cover the field of forced migration are few and far between. Most tend to be in-house publications like the two mentioned above rather than formally published reference materials. Some additional titles include:

- International Agreed Glossary of Basic Terms Related to Disaster Management (1992) [text]. This also served as the source for the Multi-language Glossary on Natural Disasters [site].

- International Migration Law: Glossary on Migration (2004) [text]. Although note that the refugee community's response to this glossary from IOM was quite critical. The Director of UNHCR's Protection Division expressed its "concer[n] that important refugee principles and asylum concepts have been subsumed as if they were simply subject headings within an established body of 'International Migration Law', with key principles and concepts having, as a result, been loosely, sometimes even inappropriately defined" (UNHCR Statement). See also ICVA's statement.

- International Thesaurus of Refugee Terminology (online version, 2003) [site]. Although not a glossary, the thesaurus has been in print since 1988 and provides standardized terminology for many of the information centers with specialized forced migration collections. Definitions in the form of "scope notes" are included for a number of terms.

Posted in Publications and Web Sites/Tools.

2005 Refugee/IDP Statistics

UNHCR's "2005 Global Refugee Trends" report indicates that the refugee population decreased from 9.5 million in 2004 to 8.4 million last year. However, the total number of people of concern to the agency increased overall to almost 21 million from 19.5 million, due largely to rising numbers of internally displaced persons (IDPs) that now fall under UNHCR's remit.

A press statement with an overview of the report's findings is here and the text of the report is here.

The U.S. Committee for Refugees and Immigrants' World Refugee Survey 2006 will be published June 14. The survey also includes figures for global refugee and IDP populations.

Posted in Publications.

Resources: Addressing Violence against Women

Breaking the Code: Building Capacity to Investigate Sexual Abuse and Exploitation by Humanitarian Workers. Evaluating ICVA’s Building Safer Organizations Project (June 2006) [text]
- From the Women's Commission for Refugee Women and Children; more information about the Building Safer Organizations Project is available on the ICVA web site.

International Symposium on Sexual Violence in Conflict and Beyond, 21-23 June 2006, Brussels, Palais d’Egmont [more info.]
- Co-hosted by the European Commission and the Belgian government.

Researching Violence Against Women: A Practical Guide for Researchers and Activists (May 2006) [text]
- Co-published by PATH and WHO.

Posted in Publications and Events.

08 June 2006

UN Report on International Migration

The UN Pulse announced that the Secretary-General presented a report on international migration to the General Assembly on 6 June 2006. The press release summarizing the contents of the report is available here. The text of the report is provided in all official UN languages here. (Note: If this link doesn't work, access the report through the aforementioned UN Pulse message.)

More information on the High-Level Dialogue on International Migration and Development is available from the UN Population Division.

Posted in Publications.

07 June 2006

Trafficking in Persons Report 2006

As required under the Victims of Trafficking and Violence Protection Act of 2000, the U.S. Secretary of State submits an annual Trafficking in Persons Report to Congress. The 2006 Report, released 5 June, includes essays, country reports, and information on signatories to relevant international conventions. Previous reports are available online since 2001.

Other recent information resources relating to human trafficking include:

Falling Short of the Mark: An International Study on the Treatment of Human Trafficking Victims (March 2006) [text]
- From the Future Group.

Forced Migration Review, no. 25 (May 2006) [text]
- Special issue on "People trafficking: upholding rights & understanding vulnerabilities."

Guidelines on International Protection: The application of Article 1A(2) of the 1951 Convention and/or 1967 Protocol relating to the Status of Refugees to victims of trafficking and persons at risk of being trafficked (7 April 2006) [text]
- From UNHCR.

Trafficking in Persons: Global Patterns (April 2006) [text]
- From the UN Office on Drugs and Crime.

Posted in Publications.

06 June 2006

International Migration Programme, 21-31 August 2006

The Centre d'Etudes de l'Ethnicité et des Migrations (CEDEM) at the Université de Liège in Belgium is offering a sixth Intensive Summer Programme of the European Doctorate on Migration, Diversity and Identities from the 21st to the 31st of August. The focus is on theories of international migration. Tuition, meals and accommodation are provided free of charge to participants. The deadline to register is June 30th. Read more here.

Posted in Events.

New Research Papers/Articles

de Haas, Hein, "Turning the tide? Why 'development instead of migration' policies are bound to fail," International Migration Institute Working Paper No. 2 (Oxford: Intl. Migration Inst., 2006) [text]

Hart, Jason and Bex Tyrer, "Research with Children Living in Situations of Armed Conflict: Concepts, Ethics & Methods," RSC Working Paper No. 30 (Oxford: RSC, May 2006) [text]

Harvard Human Rights Journal, vol. 19 (Spring 2006) [issue]
- The theme of this issue is "UN Reform and Human Rights."

"Saving lives through livelihoods: critical gaps in the response to the drought in the Greater Horn of Africa," HPG Briefing Note (London: ODI, May 2006 [text]

WFP Forum on the Future of Food Aid in Sudan, 6–8 June 2006, Khartoum
- A compilation of abstracts, expert opinions, new research, and background papers is now available from the Feinstein International Famine Center.

Posted in Publications and Periodicals.

03 June 2006

IDP Developments

The Internal Displacement Monitoring Centre (IDMC) reported that the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and the Norwegian Refugee Council (NRC) have signed an agreement "to improve IDP protection." While UNHCR is the principal refugee organization, it was recently designated the lead agency for the protection of conflict-induced IDPs by the Inter-Agency Standing Committee (IASC). The NRC has consistently promoted both IDP and refugee protection in its field operations.

Chapter seven of UNHCR's newly published State of the World's Refugees discusses recent "efforts to strengthen the international response to crises of internal displacement."

A recent article in the Human Rights Tribune provides an overview of the international protection of internally displaced persons and includes links to the web sites of the principal organizations involved in IDP issues.

The International Institute of Humanitarian Law (IIHL) is offering a new course on the law of internal displacement. The next session will be held 2-7 October 2006, in Sanremo, Italy.

Posted in Publications.

02 June 2006

New Periodical Issues

Australasian Journal of Disaster and Trauma Studies, vol. 2006-1 [full-text]
- Includes an article on the trauma of political displacement.

AWR Bulletin, vol. 44, no. 1 (2006) [contents]
- Includes Italian, English and German articles on restitution issues and/or the right of return in former Yugoslavia, the Middle East, the Balkans, and Cyprus.

CrisisWatch, no. 34 (June 2006) [full-text]

Human Rights Tribune, vol. 12, no. 1 (April 2006) [full-text]
- Special issue on migration. Includes two articles on IDPs (one on the Guiding Principles and another on displacement in Burma) and one article on refugees in Thailand.

International Migration Review, vol. 40, no. 2 (June 2006) [contents]
- Includes an article on Chinese asylum-seeker networks.

Journal of Ethnic and Migration Studies, vol. 32, no. 5 (July 2006) [contents]
- Includes two articles on refugees in Britain, one which focuses on social networks and the other which looks at the effects of dispersal on refugee community organisations.

Migration Information Source, June 2006 [full-text]

Posted in Periodicals.

01 June 2006

ICRC Annual Report 2005

Released today, the Annual Report of the International Committee of the Red Cross "provides an in-depth account of the ICRC's operations in 2005, broken down by country." ICRC's assistance to victims of armed conflicts and natural disasters is detailed. The report also describes the organization's support for internally displaced persons (IDPs) and its activities to promoted international humanitarian law.

The contents of the report can be accessed either as a complete document or chapter by chapter.

More information on the ICRC is available at its web site.

Posted in Publications.

New Guidance for Child Assistance & Protection

Two new publications are available that provide operational guidance for field staff who work with children.

Infant and Young Child Feeding in Emergencies: Operational Guidance for Emergency Relief Staff and Programme Managers (May 2006) [text]
- The "aim of this document is to provide concise, practical (but non technical) guidance on how to ensure appropriate infant and young child feeding in emergencies. ...The Operational Guidance focuses especially on infants and young children under 2 years of age and their caregivers, recognising their particular vulnerability in emergencies." This is an update of the 2001 version.

UNHCR Guidelines on Formal Determination of the Best Interests of the Child (May 2006) [text]
- The "Guidelines identify the underlying principles that can be used to construct a framework for ensuring compliance with the Convention on the Rights of the Child in a formal Best Interests Determination (BID). They set out the legal and other principles that will guide decision-makers in (i) When to make a formal Best Interests Determination; (ii) Who should make the determination and what procedural safeguards should be followed; (iii) How criteria should be applied to take a decision in a particular case." These Guidelines will eventually be incorporated into an update of Refugee Children: Guidelines on Protection and Care (1994).

Posted in Publications.