Refugees are individuals fleeing armed conflict or persecution, who have crossed international borders to seek safety in another country. As refugees are recognized and protected under international law, they have a right not to be returned to situations where their lives and freedoms are at risk.
Asylum-seekers are individuals seeking international protection, but whose claims to refugee status have not yet been determined.
Returned refugees (Returnees) are former refugees who have returned to their country of origin, either spontaneously or in an organized manner. Such returns would normally take place only under conditions of safety and dignity.
Stateless People are not officially recognized as nationals by any State under the operation of its law, and therefore do not hold the nationality of any State. UNHCR has been granted a global mandate by the United Nations General Assembly to contribute to the prevention and reduction of statelessness and the protection of stateless persons.