Australian politics 100th day of protest on Nauru Liz Walsh 27 June 2016 For many years, Australian television crews have been denied access to the detention camp on Nauru. That’s the way the Australian government wants to keep its political prisoners: faceless and shrouded in secrecy. Since 2014, Nauru has charged a […]
RESPECT THE RULE OF LAW AND INTERNATIONAL LAW?
THE REFUGEE CONVENTION
Seeking asylum for protection from persecution is legal.
The United Nations 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees (The Refugee Convention) was drafted in response to the many thousands of displaced people in Europe after the Second World War (1939-1945).
Under the Refugee Convention a refugee is a person who is:
- outside their own country and
- has a well-founded fear of being persecuted due to his/ her race, religion, nationality, member of a particular social group or political opinion, and is
- unable or unwilling to return.
Many countries, including Australia, have signed and ratified (legally implemented) the Refugee Convention. This means that countries are obliged to help individuals who are dislocated from their home country because of the threat of persecution.
By signing the Refugee Convention each country shows their intention to implement the legislation and policy that is required in order to support the refugee protection process. In Australia the law is implemented through the Migration Act 1958 (Cth).
Countries that are not signatories to the Refugee Convention have no international obligation to accept people seeking asylum, although many still do.