Daily Archives: Wednesday, November 21, 2012

UK Human Rights Blog

R (Bancoult) v. Foreign & Commonwealth Office, Divisional Court, 21 November 2012  read judgment

I posted recently (here) on two decisions concerning Chagossian refugees in their long-running campaign to be re-settled in the islands from which they were evicted by the UK in the 1960s. The first was a claim for further documentation, the second an application for cross-examination of key Foreign Office witnesses on the basis of a Wikileaks document (read judgment and read judgment). 

And here is another skirmish in the same battle.

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New Publications on Detention; Refugees in Camps and Cities; and Legal Items

Details of these new publications were originally circulated by Elisa Mason on the incredibly useful: Forced Migration Current Awareness Blog.  Further details can be found on the website at:  http://fm-cab.blogspot.co.uk/

Publications on Detention

Back in the Spotlight: The Detention of Mentally Ill Asylum Seekers (UK Human Rights Blog, Oct. 2012) [text]

Immigration Detention: Penal Regime or Step towards Deportation? About Respecting Human Rights in Immigration Detention (National Ombudsman of the Netherlands, Aug. 2012) [text via Euromed MigrAsyl Blog]

In the Name of the Italian People (Za Lab, 2012) [access via Fortress Europe Blog]
– Documentary focusing on immigration detention.

One Size Fits All: Immigration Detention Fails to Deliver Expected Outcomes (JRS Europe, Oct. 2012) [text]

Population, Space and Place, vol. 18, no. 6 (Nov./Dec. 2012) [contents]
– Special issue on immigration detention.

Publications on Refugees in Camps and Cities

From Camp to City: Refugee Camps of the Western Sahara (Lars Müller Publishers, Sept. 2012) [publisher info] [author info]

Hidden Lives: The Untold Story of Urban Refugees (IRC, ECHO & Panos Pictures, Nov. 2012) [access]
– Trailer describing photo project of Andrew McConnell; see also related interview.

“Implementing a Revised Refugee Policy for Urban Refugees in Tanzania,” Oxford Monitor of Forced Migration, vol. 2, no. 2 (Nov. 2012) [full-text]

Space, Time, Dignity, Rights: Improving Palestine Refugee Camps [access]
– Exhibition that aims to re-conceptualize refugee camps.  See also info. from UNRWA.

“There’s No Place Like a Refugee Camp? Urban Planning and Participation in the Camp Context,” Refuge, vol. 28, no. 1 (2012) [open access text]

Three-part Report Series on “Urban Refugees in Amman & Cairo” (Institute for the Study of International Migration, Nov. 2012)
– Urban Refugees in Amman: Mainstreaming of Healthcare [text]
– Urban Refugees in Amman, Jordan [text]
– Urban Refugees in Cairo [text]

“The ‘Urban Redesign’ of Jenin Refugee Camp: Humanitarian Intervention and Rational Violence,” Journal of Palestine Studies, vol. 41, no. 2 (Winter 2012) [preview]

*Urban Refugees: Hidden in Plain Sight (Huffington Post, Nov. 2012) [text]

Publications on Legal Items

Annual Harrell-Bond Lecture 2012: The Architecture of Refugee Protection, Oxford, 7 Nov. 2012 [access]
– Podcast of lecture (see photo from event).

“Introductory Note to the European Court of Justice’s Decision on Preconditions for Exclusion from Refugee Status (Federal Republic of Germany v. B and D),” International Legal Materials, vol. 50, no. 1 (2011; posted Nov. 2012) [preprint via SSRN]

“Is Switzerland an EU Member State? Asylum Law Harmonization through the Backdoor,” Chapter in The Global Reach of European Refugee Law (Cambridge University Press, forthcoming 2013) [preprint via SSRN]

“A Pirate and a Refugee: Reservations and Responses in the Fight Against Piracy,” ILSA Journal of International & Comparative Law, vol. 17, no. 2 (2011; posted Nov. 2012) [free full-text via SSRN]

“Sources of International Migration Law,” Chapter in Foundations of International Migration Law (Cambridge University Press, 2012) [text via SSRN]

Parliamentary inquiry into new family migration rules

APPG on Migration prepares to launch new family migration inquiry | Migrants’ Rights Network (MRN).

Sponsoring a spouse, partner or elderly relative to come to the UK has never been easy, but in July 2012 the door slammed shut for many people altogether. This week a new inquiry launched by the APPG on Migration and headed up by shadow Equalities Minister Kate Green MP will begin to take evidence on the impacts of these rule changes on individuals and communities across the UK.

In particular the Committee will look at the new minimum earnings requirement of £18,600 for people wanting to bring their spouse or partner to join them in the UK. It’s estimated that 47% of the British working population earns less than this – and the Home Office anticipates that over 15,000 couples per year will be kept apart as a result of the new rules.

The Committee will also review new requirements for bringing adult or elderly dependents to the UK, including that applicants need long-term personal care in the UK which cannot be provided by anyone but the UK-based sponsor. The changes are expected to reduce the number of elderly parents and grandparents able to come to the UK from just short of 3000 per year to the hundreds.

The new APPG Migration family migration inquiry has been launched in order to allow concerned parliamentarians to consider a wide range of views and evidence on the rule changes. It will be led by Kate Green MP, shadow equalities minister, chair of a parliamentary committee which includes Sarah Teather MP, Paul Uppal MP, Jack Dromey MP, Baroness Hamwee and Lord Hussain. The inquiry will be coordinated by the APPG on Migration, and will take evidence from all interested parties – from individuals directly affected by the rule changes, economists, employers, trades unions, thinktanks and community organisations – about the impacts of the new rules and the way forward. 

Since these new rules came into force, MRN has received many phone calls and emails from people who are devastated by the impacts of the rule changes. It is our view that family life for many groups across the UK has been thrown into jeopardy, including young couples, people from many Asian communities, pensioners and people living in areas with lower-than-average earnings. However, this is an opportunity for groups, analysts and individuals to highlight a wide range of experiences and analysis relevant to this issue. We hope that all those with an interest and stake in the family migration rules will take part in submitting evidence over the coming weeks and months.

Full details of the APPG Migration family migration inquiry will be circulated on Tuesday 20 November 2012, and will be available on the APPG Migration website. Please note that all evidence should be submitted via the APPG Migration website or sent to info@appgmigration.org.uk and not sent directly to the committee members.

 

New Publications from Human Rights Watch

Rights Out of Reach

Rights Out of Reach

Rights Out of Reach: Obstacles to Health, Justice, and Protection for Displaced Victims of Gender-Based Violence in Colombia
By Human Rights Watch.

This 101-page report documents how recent improvements in Colombia’s laws, policies, and programs on rape and domestic violence have not translated into more effective justice, healthcare, and protection for displaced women and girls. More than half of the country’s roughly four million displaced are female.

[Download Full Report]
Read the Press Release – Colombia: Obstacles to Care for Abused, Displaced Women

Lonely Servitude

Lonely Servitude

Lonely Servitude: Child Domestic Labor in Morocco.
By Human Rights Watch.

This 73-page report found that some child domestic workers – who are overwhelmingly girls – toil for 12 hours a day, 7 days a week, for as little as US$11 a month. Some girls told Human Rights Watch that their employers frequently beat and verbally abused them, denied them education, and sometimes refused them adequate food.‬

[Download Full Report]
Read the Press Release – Morocco: Abuse of Child Domestic Workers

"A Long Way from Reconciliation"

“A Long Way from Reconciliation”

“A Long Way from Reconciliation”: Abusive Military Crackdown in Response to Security Threats in Côte d’Ivoire.
By Human Rights Watch.

This 73-page report details the brutal crackdown that followed a series of violent attacks on military installations around the country in August. The attacks were allegedly committed by militants loyal to former President Laurent Gbagbo. The resulting crackdown recalled the grave crimes committed during the 2010-2011 post-election crisis, in some cases under the same commanders previously identified as responsible for brutal abuses, Human Rights Watch found. The government of President Alassane Ouattara needs to ensure the prompt investigation and prosecution of forces who committed serious human rights abuses, including torture and inhuman treatment, in response to these security threats, Human Rights Watch said.

[Download Full Report]
Read the Press Release – Côte d’Ivoire: New Spate of Abuses by Military

Losing Humanity

Losing Humanity

Losing Humanity: The Case against Killer Robots.
By Human Rights Watch.

This 50-page report outlines concerns about these fully autonomous weapons, which would inherently lack human qualities that provide legal and non-legal checks on the killing of civilians. In addition, the obstacles to holding anyone accountable for harm caused by the weapons would weaken the law’s power to deter future violations.

[Download Full Report]
Read the Press Release – Ban ‘Killer Robots’ Before It’s Too Late