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Forced Migration, The Refugee Regime And The Responsibility To Protect

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Chapter Summary

This chapter discusses the evolution of the international community's involvement with the forcibly displaced. It begins with the League of Nations and its successes and failures, and proceeding through the establishment of UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) and the entry into force of the UN Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees. The chapter then discusses UNHCR's expanding role in using its good offices to provide assistance and protection to a widening range of forced migrants. It finally presents a framework for determining under what circumstances UNHCR should extend its good offices to the newly emerging categories of forced migrants, including those who may be displaced by the effects of climate change. The chapter argues that these decisions should be based on the principles underlying the responsibility to protect- that is, protection of persons whose own governments are unwilling to provide such protection.

Keywords: forced migration; refugee regime; UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)



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