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Australia/Papua New Guinea: Supreme Court Rules Asylum-Seeker Detention Is Unconstitutional

(May 2, 2016) On April 26, 2016, the Papua New Guinea Supreme Court ruled that the detention of asylum seekers at a facility on Manus Island, Papua New Guinea, which was established under an arrangement with Australia, is a breach of their right to personal liberty under the Papua New Guinea Constitution. (Namah v Pato [2016] […]

Austria: State of Emergency Legislation Being Considered to Limit Refugee Numbers

(Apr. 19, 2016) A legal opinion commissioned by the Austrian government and delivered in March 2016 found that the plan of the Austrian Federation, states, municipalities, and cities to impose an upper limit on the amount of refugees, if the limit is understood as an absolute number, violates international and European Union law. According to […]

Canada: Government Announces Plan to Take in up to 57,000 Refugees This Year

(Mar. 29, 2016) On March 8, 2016, the government of Canada announced it plans to take in between 51,000 and 57,000 refugees this year, approximately double the number received in 2015. (Canada Doubles Refugee Target to 57,000 by the End of This Year, THE GUARDIAN (Mar. 8, 2016); see also Notice – Supplementary Information 2016 […]

Hungary/Sweden: Sweden Stops Deportation and Relocation of Asylum Seekers to Hungary

(Mar. 4, 2016) On March 2, 2016, the Swedish Migration Court of the Stockholm Administrative Court revoked the decision by the Swedish Migration Authority to send asylum seekers who had sought asylum both in Sweden and in Hungary back to Hungary in conformity with the Dublin Regulation. (Press Release, Migration Court of Stockholm Administrative Court, […]

Netherlands: List of Safe Countries of Origin for Asylum Purposes Expanded

(Feb. 12, 2016) On February 9, 2016, the State Secretary for Security and Justice of the Netherlands, Klaas Dijkhoff, announced that he will add six jurisdictions to the country’s list of safe countries of origin; persons from countries on this list are deemed presumptively ineligible for asylum. The new additions are Ghana, India, Jamaica, Morocco, Mongolia, and Senegal, although Morocco […]

Germany: Proposed Tightening of Asylum Rules

(Feb. 8, 2016) On February 3, 2016, the German government agreed on a set of stricter asylum measures (“Asylum Package II”). The Asylum Package II would accelerate the asylum application process; suspend family reunification for refugees with subsidiary protection status for a period of two years; decrease asylees’ monthly cash benefits; facilitate deportation; establish a […]

Australia/Nauru: High Court Rules Offshore Detention of Asylum Seekers Is Lawful

(Feb. 5, 2016) On February 3, 2016, the High Court of Australia, Australia’s highest court, held in a 6-1 decision that the government is legally able to participate in the detention of asylum seekers in the Pacific island country of Nauru; this means that a number of people who were brought to Australia to receive […]

Austria: Newly Proposed Measures on Asylum and Refugees

(Feb. 5, 2016) On January 20, 2016, the Austrian Federation and the Austrian states, as well as the municipalities and cities, came to an understanding on an upper limit of 127,500 refugees that will be allowed to apply for asylum in Austria over the course of the next four years. If implemented into binding legislation, […]

South Korea: Refugee Resettlement Program

(Jan. 4, 2016) The first refugees to be handled under South Korea’s new resettlement program arrived in Korea on December 23, 2015. South Korea’s Refugee Act became effective in July 2013. (The Refugee Act, Act No. 11298 of 2012 (Feb. 10, 2012) REFWORLD.) The Act states, “[t]he Minister of Justice may permit resettlement in the […]

United Nations: Mid-Year Report on Global Forced Displacement

(Dec. 22, 2015) On December 18, 2015, the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) published the UNHCR Mid-Year Trends 2015 report, an analysis of “displacement trends during the first half of 2015, based on statistics collected by UNHCR, governments, and non-governmental organizations (NGOs).”  (UNHCR MID-YEAR TRENDS 2015, at 3, UNHCR website […]