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International Migration and Refugee Law Collection

World Refugee Day is held on 20 June each year to raise awareness of, and educate people on, the challenges faced by migrants and refugees across the world.

In recognition of this day we have made a selection of chapters, encyclopedia entries, and journal articles on international migration and refugee law free to read throughout June and July. This collection covers both introductory texts on the subject and in-depth analysis of related legal frameworks, international organisations, and human rights issues.

All content featured below from Oxford Scholarly Authorities on International Law, the Max Planck Encyclopedias of International Law, Oxford Scholarship Online, and Oxford Journals is free to access until 31 July 2020.

Introductions to International Migration and Refugee Law


By David Weissbrodt. From the Max Planck Encyclopedia of Public International Law.


From International Migration Law, by Vincent Chetail.

This introductory chapter provides an overview of the issue of migration and considers data and statistics to inform and objectivize the debate in an attempt to dispel the complexity of international law and migration.



Protection During Migration, Forced Displacement, and Flight
From The Law of International Human Rights Protection (2nd Edition), by Walter Kälin and Jörg Künzli.

This chapter discusses the law on liberty of movement in one's own country, migrants, internally displaced persons, and refugees.


Refugee Chains
By Alison Kesby. From International Law's Objects, edited by Jessie Hohmann and Daniel Joyce.

This chapter uses the object and concept of a chain to examine international refugee law which is shown to be a chain of shifting hue and state of repair.


International Migration and Refugee Law Collection


A Hostile Environment for Children? The Rights and Best Interests of the Refugee Child in the United Kingdom’s Asylum Law
By Ruth Brittle. From Human Rights Law Review.

This article analyses how the children’s rights framework, in particular the ‘best interests’ principle, is able to challenge the UK’s ‘hostile environment’ policy.


Addressing Displacement in the Context of Disasters and the Adverse Effects of Climate Change: Elements and Opportunities in the Global Compact on Refugees 
By Volker Türk and Madeline Garlick. From the International Journal of Refugee Law.

This article examines the provisions in the Global Compact on Refugees that relate to displacement in the context of environmental degradation, sudden- and slow-onset events, and the adverse effects of climate change more broadly.


A Legal Analysis of a Crucial Element in Country Guidance Determinations: Country of Origin Information 
By Femke Vogelaar. From the International Journal of Refugee Law.

Femke Vogelaar examines the use of Country of Origin Information (COI) by the Immigration and Asylum Chamber of the United Kingdom Upper Tribunal in country guidance determinations.


Article 22 Refugee Children
By Jason M Pobjoy. From The UN Convention on the Rights of the Child: A Commentary, edited by John Tobin.

The international community’s long-standing recognition that refugee children are entitled to special protection finds expression in article 22 of the Convention on the Rights of the Child (‘CRC’, ‘the Convention’).


Asylum at Sea: The Legality of Shipboard Refugee Status Determination Procedures
By Azadeh Dastyari and Daniel Ghezelbash. From the International Journal of Refugee Law.

This article examines the relevant international law, as well as State practice and domestic jurisprudence in the United States and Australia, to explore whether shipboard processing complies with international refugee and human rights law.


Commission for Real Property Claims of Displaced Persons and Refugees
By Hans van Houtte. From the Max Planck Encyclopedia of International Procedural Law.


Committee on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of their Families
By Vincent Chetail. From the Max Planck Encyclopedia of International Procedural Law.


Community Interests in International Migration and Refugee Law
By Tally Kritzman-Amir. From Community Interests Across International Law, edited by Eyal Benvenisti and Georg Nolte.

This chapter takes a closer look at some of the main components of international refugee law and some of the recent European practices in order to see how they resonate the notion of community obligation and convey a commitment to the common protection of human rights, in a way that deviates from a purely consent-based conception of the norms.


Crimes: Migrant Smuggling
From An Introduction to Transnational Criminal Law (2nd Edition), by Neil Boister.

This chapter explores the nature of modern migrant smuggling before turning to the criminalization of assistance of migration of individuals whether or not they qualify for refugee status. It examines the main international instrument designed for that purpose, the Migrant Smuggling Protocol, paying particular attention to the various criminal offences in the Protocol.


The Human Element of Maritime Crime: Stowaways, Human Trafficking, and Migrant Smuggling
By Patricia Mallia. From The IMLI Manual on International Maritime Law: Volume III: Marine Environmental Law and International Maritime Security Law, edited by David Joseph Attard, Malgosia Fitzmaurice, Norman Martinez, and Riyaz Hamza.

This chapter gives an overview of the legal regime relevant to stowaways, migrant smuggling, and trafficking in individuals.


Interpreting Evidence of Torture
By Bernard Wn Robertson and Charles Eh Berger. From Medical Law Review.

The Istanbul Protocol provides a scheme for giving evidence of signs of torture. This scheme does not conform with the principles of logical inference, revolving as it does round the concept of ‘consistency’. The shortcomings of the Protocol are explained using the evidence given in the recent case of KV(Sri Lanka) and the logical approach to such evidence explained.


Introduction: EU Pre-border Controls and Protection Seeker Flows
From Accessing Asylum in Europe: Extraterritorial Border Controls and Refugee Rights under EU Law, by Violeta Moreno-Lax.

This chapter presents the subject matter under scrutiny and provides a historical account of the development of extraterritorial strategies of migration management in Europe, coinciding with parallel changes in refugee movements and the composition of migratory flows on the global scale.


The Legal Abyss of Discretion in the Resettlement of Refugees: Cherry-Picking and the Lack of Due Process in the EU 
By Tom de Boer and Marjoleine Zieck. From the International Journal of Refugee Law.

This article reviews the European Union (EU) resettlement proposals proposals, along with the current practice of refugee selection by EU Member States, and analyses them from a refugee rights perspective.


Reconsidering African Refugee Law 
By David James Cantor and Farai Chikwanha. From the International Journal of Refugee Law.

The 50 year anniversary of the OAU Convention represents an opportune moment to review the state of ‘African’ refugee law. This article seeks to contribute to that regional undertaking by providing insights based on a comparative analysis of national refugee laws in African States.


Rectified Sites of Violence from Westgate to Lampedusa: Exploring the Link between Public Amnesia and Conflict in Ongoing Confrontations
By Andrea Purdeková. From International Journal of Transitional Justice.

Looking at the unmarked sites of violence in East Africa’s confrontation with Al-Shabaab, such as the Westgate Mall, and the Mediterranean crossings within the system of migration deterrence, the article asks: How do rectification practices and associated public production of silence feed into conflict dynamics and conflict transformation?


Regional Human Rights Law
From The Regional Law of Refugee Protection in Africa, by Marina Sharpe.

This chapter begins with a review of the literature on the relationship between international human rights law and international refugee law. It then goes on to address regional human rights law followed by surveys of relevant aspects of the Women’s Protocol and the Children’s Charter.


Statelessness through the Prism of International Refugee Law: The Revival of a Protection Issue
From International Refugee Law and the Protection of Stateless Persons, by Michelle Foster and Hélène Lambert.

This chapter articulates the challenges faced by the international community as a result of the separation of the international regime for the protection of refugees and stateless persons respectively into two distinct instruments.


When Law Migrates: Refugees in Comparative International Law
By Jill I. Goldenziel. From Comparative International Law, edited by Anthea Roberts, Paul B. Stephan, Pierre-Hugues Verdier, and Mila Versteeg.

Drawing on cases from the United States, Australia, and the ECtHR, this chapter compares how the 1951 Refugee Convention has been interpreted across countries and over time.


Young Terrorists or Child Soldiers? ISIS Children, International Law and Victimhood
By Conrad Nyamutata. From Journal of Conflict and Security Law.

This article makes a case for the treatment of ISIS-associated children to be considered as victims first and accord them protections recognised in international law.



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