|Top 10 Neglected Refugee Crises
Most refugee and displacement crises continue long after public attention and donor interest wane, and others never make it into the spotlight. This often leaves the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) and aid organizations with the difficult task of assisting large populations of refugees, forced migrants and internally displaced people (IDPs) without sufficient funding, political will or support from the international community.
Reliefweb, 21st November 2012
EDM 731: International Migrants Day - Tuesday 18th December
That this House acknowledges the contribution that migrants continue to make to this country in all spheres of life; notes that many migrants are vulnerable to exploitation and can face unacceptable levels of abuse; and joins in the celebration of United Nations' International Migrants Day on 18 December 2012 as an opportunity to raise awareness about the contribution and the rights of migrants in the UK.
Sponsors: Sharma, Virendra / Bottomley, Peter / Durkan, Mark / Russell, Bob House of Commons, 19/11/2012
Judicial Implementation of Article 3 Convention Rights of the Child
This principle is of particular relevance to the situation of migrant children, including unaccompanied migrant children, in regular or irregular situations"In all actions concerning children, whether undertaken by public or private social welfare institutions, courts of law, administrative authorities or legislative bodies, the best interests of the child shall be a primary consideration". This principle is of particular relevance to the situation of migrant children, including unaccompanied migrant children, in regular or irregular situations that are the focus of this study.
For more information click here . . . .
Garden Court Chambers - Immigration Law Bulletin – Issue 301
UNHCR Position on Returns to North/South Kivu in DR Congo
[William Hague last night 18/11/12, warned Britons to leave the Congolese city of Goma after Rwandan-backed rebel fighters arrived on its outskirts]
As the situation in the Kivus and adjacent areas, particularly Katanga, affected by the spill-over of the conflict, is fluid and may remain uncertain, UNHCR urges States not to forcibly return to DRC persons originating from these areas until the security and human rights situation has improved considerably.
Read the full briefing, UNHCR here . . . .
Congo Rebels Advance to Outskirts of Goma
A Rwandan-backed rebel group has advanced to within two miles of Goma, a crucial provincial capital in eastern Congo, the first time rebels have been so close since 2008. The advance came despite the deaths of 151 rebels and two army officers in fighting that culminated in a series of attacks by UN helicopters on rebel positions in eastern Congo on Saturday. A Congolese army spokesman, Colonel Olivier Hamuli, said the fighting around Goma started at 6:00 am on Saturday. He denied reports that Congolese soldiers were refusing to fight and fleeing.
Read more: guardian.co.uk, Sunday 18 November 2012
Not Wanted Here: Myanmar's Rohingya Crisis
Five months after communal violence erupted in Myanmar's Rakhine State, the plight of the 800,000 Muslim Rohingya there has worsened: Renewed violence in late October left more than 100,000 displaced, according to the government. The Rohingya are a Muslim minority ethnically related to the Bengali people living in neighbouring Bangladesh's Chittagong District. They form 90 percent of the one million people living in the north of Rakhine State in Myanmar, which borders Bangladesh and includes the townships of Maungdaw, Buthidaung and Rathedaung. While residents in northern Rakhine State are predominantly Muslim, ethnic Rakhines - primarily Buddhist - are the majority of the state's three million residents.
Read more: Reliefweb, 16/11/12
G4S Misses Asylum Seeker Deadline
Councils in the north of England have been forced to provide accommodation for hundreds of asylum seekers because a private company failed to meet its deadline to rehouse them. Contracting giant G4S should have taken over the housing of asylum seekers from councils in Yorkshire and Humberside on Monday 12/11/12 on behalf of the UK Border Agency. But on the 12 November deadline councils were still housing 339 of the original 1,468 asylum seekers in the region, with Kirklees, Leeds and Barnsley councils housing the majority. The local authorities now have a contract direct with the UK Border Agency to accommodate the asylum seekers for a further four weeks.
Read more: By Emily Twinch, Inside Housing, 16/11/2012
Egypt: A Year of Abuses Against Detained Children
Egyptian police and military officers have arrested and detained over 300 children during protests in Cairo over the past year, in some cases beating or torturing them, Human Rights Watch said today. Frequently, these children were illegally jailed with adult prisoners, tried in adult courts, and denied their rights to counsel and notification of their families.
Human Rights Watch found strong evidence that police and military officers beat many of the children and in some cases subjected them to treatment amounting to torture. Children told Human Rights Watch, their parents and lawyers that police and military officers kicked them, beat them with rifle butts, hit them with batons, and subjected them to electric shocks.
Read more: Human Rights Watch, 20/11/12
Asylum Research Consultancy (ARC) COI Update Volume 44
This document provides an update of Country Guidance case law and UKBA publications and developments in refugee producing countries between 03/11/2012 and 18/11/2012 - Volume 45 here . . .
Immigration Rules (Changes)
Restricting the ability of students to switch into the entrepreneur route, due to concerns about abuse;
The Minister for Immigration (Mr Mark Harper): My right hon. Friend the Home Secretary is today laying before the House a statement of changes in immigration rules.
Providing for entrepreneurs with funding from Departments of devolved Administrations;
Lowering the English language requirement for entrepreneurs in response to concerns that the high requirement was a possible deterrent to potentially successful businesses;
Restricting investors from working as professional sportspeople, to prevent them circumventing the sports governing body endorsement needed in the dedicated routes for sportspeople;
Additional controls to ensure entrepreneurs and investors genuinely have access to the funds they claim they do;
Providing for investors' leave to be curtailed if they fail to maintain the required level of investment; and
Clarifications to confirm that points will not be awarded for investments against which applicants have taken out loans, or investments that are held in offshore custody.
The consequential changes will also:
change the periods before a deportation order will normally be revoked;
introduce a limited leave "route" for foreign and Commonwealth ex-armed forces personnel who fail to qualify for indefinite leave or citizenship because of a relatively minor conviction;
introduce a re-entry ban of five years for any offender who leaves the UK as a requirement of a conditional caution; and
introduce a discretionary power to curtail leave where a person commits an offence within the first six months of entering the UK.
Finally, I am also making a number of minor technical changes, corrections and updates to lists contained in the Immigration Rules. Details of these are set out in the explanatory memorandum being laid today to accompany the changes.
House of Commons / 22 Nov 2012 : Column 40WS
UKBA Chiefs Accused Of Misleading Parliament
Immigration chiefs were accused of misleading Parliament after a "devastating" report exposed a catalogue of incompetence and inefficiency at the UK Border Agency (UKBA). Efforts to trace tens of thousands of asylum seekers were abandoned after minimal efforts to find them and despite promises to MPs that "exhaustive checks" would be carried out, the Chief Inspector of Borders and Immigration concluded.
The UKBA operation was so inept that more than 150 boxes contained letters from asylum applicants, their lawyers and MPs piled up in an office in Liverpool without even being opened. At one point the agency had accumulated a backlog of more than 100,000 letters that it had not read. The chief inspector, John Vine, said errors led to "lengthy and distressing" delays for asylum seekers, including unaccompanied children, as they waited for their cases to be heard. In some cases people qualified to remain in Britain simply because of the length of time it took for their applications to be processed.
Read more: Nigel Morris, Indpendent, Thursday 22 November 2012
DR Congo: UN Condemns Goma Takeover By M23 Rebels
The United Nations security council has unanimously condemned the seizure of the Congolese city of Goma and asked the UN secretary general, Ban Ki-moon, to report on what external support the rebels have received.
Diplomats at the United Nations and regional mediators in Central Africa sought on Wednesday night to ward off a deeper conflict after rebels widely believed to be backed by Rwanda captured the eastern Congolese city.
Read more: guardian.co.uk, Wednesday 21 November 2012
Calling Attention to Grave Circumstances of the Palestinian People
Occupied Palestinian Territories - The Special Rapporteur calls attention to the grave circumstances of the Palestinian people, living under prolonged occupation and with no realistic prospect of its termination in the near future, and under these conditions the United Nations has a great responsibility to do all that can be done to avoid the economic, political and cultural exploitation of the Palestinian people, as well as their endowment of natural resources.
UN Calls for Enforcement of Economic Sanctions Against Israel
The failure to bring the occupation to an end after 45 years creates an augmented international responsibility to uphold the human rights of the Palestinian people, who in practice live without the protection of the rule of law. In this context, the Special Rapporteur recalls that the General Assembly, as early as 1982,119 called on Member States to apply economic sanctions against the State of Israel for its unlawful settlement activities.
The Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights require all business enterprises to respect human rights, which means, in the first instance, avoiding infringing on the human rights of others and addressing adverse impacts on human rights. The Special Rapporteur calls on both States and business enterprises to ensure the full and effective implementation of the Guiding Principles in the context of business operations relating to Israeli settlements in the occupied Palestinian territory.
The Special Rapporteur calls on the international community to transparently investigate the business activities of companies registered in their own respective countries, especially those highlighted in this report, that profit from Israel's settlements, and take appropriate action to end such practices and ensure appropriate reparation for affected Palestinians.
[G4S is one of the companies named in the report]
UN General Assembly 19th September 2012
You need to read the full report: Refworld, 12/11/12