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Prevention and Reduction of Statelessness and the Protection of Stateless Persons

Executive Committee Meetings

Prevention and Reduction of Statelessness and the Protection of Stateless Persons
No. 78 (XLVI) - 1995

20 October 1995
Executive Committee 46th session. Contained in United Nations General Assembly document A/AC.96/860 and document no. 12A (A/50/12/Add.1).

The Executive Committee,

Recognizing the right of everyone to a nationality and the right not to be arbitrarily deprived of one's nationality,

Concerned that statelessness, including the inability to establish one's nationality, may result in displacement,

Stressing that the prevention and reduction of statelessness and the protection of stateless persons are important in the prevention of potential refugee situations,

(a) Acknowledges the responsibilities already entrusted to the High Commissioner for stateless refugees and with respect to the reduction of statelessness, and encourages UNHCR to continue its activities on behalf of stateless persons, as part of its statutory function of providing international protection and of seeking preventive action, as well as its responsibility entrusted by the General Assembly to undertake the functions foreseen under Article 11 of the 1961 Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness;

(b) Calls upon States to adopt nationality legislation with a view to reducing statelessness, consistent with fundamental principles of international law, in particular by preventing arbitrary deprivation of nationality, and by eliminating provisions which permit the renunciation of a nationality without the prior possession or acquisition of another nationality;

(c) Requests UNHCR actively to promote accession to the 1954 Convention relating to the Status of Stateless Persons and the 1961 Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness, in view of the limited number of States parties to these instruments, as well as to provide relevant technical and advisory services pertaining to the preparation and implementation of nationality legislation to interested States;

(d) Further requests UNHCR actively to promote the prevention and reduction of statelessness through the dissemination of information, and the training of staff and government officials; and to enhance cooperation with other interested organizations;

(e) Invites UNHCR to provide it biennially, beginning at the forty-seventh session of the Executive Committee, with information on activities undertaken on behalf of stateless persons, particularly with regard to the implementation of international instruments and international principles relating to statelessness, and including the magnitude of the problem of statelessness.