Do Today’s Resettlement Practices Offer Refugees a Durable Solution?

Do Today’s Resettlement Practices Offer Refugees a Durable Solution?
14 March 2023, 6.00pm - 8.00pm

“The Changing Nature of ‘Solutions’ to Refugee Situations” Refugee Law Initiative- 13th Annual Seminar Series (2022-23)

This annual series of in-person talks and Q&A, followed by drinks and discussion, the seminars (except in March) take place at IALS, Charles Clore House, 17 Russell Sq, London WC1B 5DR.

“Do Today's Resettlement Practices Offer Refugees a Durable Solution?”
Dr Meltem Ineli-Ciger – Associate Professor, Suleyman Demirel University Faculty of Law

Resettlement is regarded as a permanent or durable solution and, as advocated by the UNHCR, resettled refugees get a permanent settlement with the opportunity for eventual citizenship. Is this still the case? No structured international legal regime governing resettlement exists. Neither the Convention relating to the Status of Refugees nor any other international instrument explicitly obliges states to provide durable solutions to refugees, including resettlement.  This means states retain sovereign competence to decide who and how many persons to resettle and which status persons will receive once resettlement. The status granted to refugees and other resettled persons in the resettlement state and if and when this status can be withdrawn is closely related to whether a certain resettlement practice offers a durable solution.

The European Commission Proposal for a Regulation establishing a Union Resettlement Framework and amending Regulation (EU) No 516/2014 foresaw that resettled persons are to be granted either refugee status or subsidiary protection status in the European Union. Although the Proposal has yet to be adopted, the Commission, as part of the new Pact on Migration and Asylum presented in 2020, called for its swift adoption. There are other recent developments that make one question the extent to which today’s resettlement practices offer refugees a durable solution. A considerable number of resettled refugees receive complementary and temporary protection statuses in Denmark whereas, most resettled Afghans evacuated or resettled to the United States following the Taliban takeover have been granted humanitarian parole but not permanent residency. This seminar will review recent state practices on resettlement and discuss whether resettlement is still a permanent or durable solution in view of these practices.

Dr Meltem Ineli Ciger is a Jean Monnet Fellow at the European University Institute, Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies and an Associate Professor at the Suleyman Demirel University Faculty of Law in Turkey. She is a member of the International Journal of Refugee Law’s Editorial Board, Odysseus Network, and a research affiliate of the Refugee Law Initiative. She has acted as an expert, consultant, and trainer for the EU Commission, Council of Europe, EMN, ICMPD, and IOM. She works on international, European and Turkish refugee and migration law and human rights law.


Refugee Law Initiative
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