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Refugee repatriation and the problem of consent

Gerver, Mollie (2018) Refugee repatriation and the problem of consent. British Journal of Political Science, 48 (4). pp. 855-875. ISSN 0007-1234

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Identification Number: 10.1017/S0007123416000193


Over the past decade, millions of refugees have fled their countries of origin and asked for asylum abroad. Some of these refugees do not receive asylum, but are not deported. Instead they are detained, or denied basic rights of residency, some forced into enclosed camps. Hoping to escape such conditions, they wish to return to unsafe countries, and ask for help from non-­‐‑governmental organizations (NGOs) and the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees. In such cases, should NGOs and the UN assist refugees to return? Drawing on original data gathered in South Sudan, and existing data from around the world, I argue that they should assist with return if certain conditions are met. First, the UN and NGOs must try to put an end to coercive conditions before helping with return. Secondly, helping with return must not encourage the government to expand the use of coercive policies to encourage more to return. Finally, NGOs and the UN must ensure that refugees are fully informed of the risks of returning. Organizations must either conduct research in countries of origin or lobby the government to allow refugees to visit their countries of origin before making a final decision.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2016 Cambridge University Press
Divisions: Government
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
H Social Sciences > HT Communities. Classes. Races
Date Deposited: 02 Jun 2016 14:28
Last Modified: 07 Jun 2024 19:39

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