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Part V The Scope of Refugee Protection, Ch.39 Exclusion

Geoff Gilbert, Anna Magdalena Bentajou

From: The Oxford Handbook of International Refugee Law

Edited By: Cathryn Costello, Michelle Foster, Jane McAdam

From: Oxford Public International Law (http://opil.ouplaw.com). (c) Oxford University Press, 2023. All Rights Reserved.date: 11 December 2023

Deportation — Expulsion — Non-refoulement — Terrorism — War crimes — Armed conflict — International peace and security

This chapter examines the exclusion provisions in article 1F of the Refugee Convention, which can only be properly understood when analysed in the context of international criminal law and the international law of armed conflict. Article 1F provides that the Convention shall not apply to persons with respect to whom there are serious reasons for considering that they have committed (a) war crimes, crimes against humanity, crimes against peace, (b) serious non-political crimes, or those who (c) are guilty of acts contrary to the purposes and principles of the UN Charter. The chapter then explores how article 1F was initially understood, before considering its application in practice and the increasing intermingling of certain ideas: exclusion as pre-status and retroactive; the difficulties of conceiving of refugee status without the guarantee of non-refoulement; the overlap of the different phrases used in the Refugee Convention when dealing with crimes and the security of the country of asylum; and how crimes that are not particularly serious might yet indicate a danger to the security of the hosting State or be contrary to the purposes and principles of the United Nations, a threat to national security, or even simply a public order concern. In addition, standards of proof, sequencing, regional mechanisms, and complementary human rights protection regimes add layers of complexity to the analysis.

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