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1 What Is Forces Migration?

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Chapter Summary

The international regime that currently seeks to protect and assist refugees is not able in many instances to ensure respect for the basic human rights of those forced to move, nor indeed can it address the needs of all or even most of those who have been forcibly displaced. This chapter analyzes the concept of forced migration and proposes a definition for use in the establishment of a new international framework for its management. The definition of forced migrant proposed in the chapter attempts to broaden coverage to protect internally displaced persons, as well as those who have crossed an international border and are in refugee-like circumstances but may not meet the narrow Convention refugee definition. Two decisive factors in determining forced migrant status are identified: 1) displacement for arbitrary reasons; and 2) the existence of valid objections to return.

Keywords: displacement; forced migration; forcibly displaced; human rights; international regime; refugees



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