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General Conclusion on International Protection

Executive Committee Meetings

General Conclusion on International Protection
No. 50 (XXXIX) - 1988

10 October 1988
Executive Committee 39th session. Contained in United Nations General Assembly Document No. 12A (A/43/12/Add.1).

The Executive Committee,

(a) Reiterated the primordial nature and fundamental importance of the High Commissioner's protection responsibilities;

(b) Noted the direct relationship between the observance of human rights standards, refugee movements and problems of protection;

(c) Stressed that States must continue to be guided, in their treatment of refugees, by existing international law and humanitarian principles and practice bearing in mind the moral dimension of providing refugee protection;

(d) Emphasized the cardinal importance of dealing with the underlying causes of refugee movements, not only to avert new flows of refugees, but also to facilitate resolution of existing problems;

(e) Noted the close nexus between international refugee protection and durable solutions and called upon the High Commissioner to continue his efforts to provide international protection through voluntary repatriation, local integration in countries of first asylum or resettlement in third countries;

(f) Expressed concern about the lack of adequate international protection for various groups of refugees in different parts of the world, including a large number of Palestinians, and hoped that efforts would continue within the United Nations system to address their protection needs;

(g) Recalled its Conclusions No. 6 (XXVIII) and 7 (XXVIII) respectively on non-refoulement and expulsion and expressed deep concern that the fundamental prohibitions against expulsion and refoulement are often violated by a number of States and appealed to all States to abide by their international obligations in this regard and to cease such practices immediately;

(h) Reaffirmed, in the context of the continuing violations of the rights and safety of refugees and asylum-seekers in different areas of the world, its Conclusion No. 48 (XXXVIII) adopted at the thirty-eighth session of the Executive Committee;

(i) Called upon States, the High Commissioner and other concerned parties to take all necessary measures to ensure that refugees are protected from arbitrary detention and violence;

(j) Recognized that the enhancement of basic economic and social rights, including gainful employment, it essential to the achievement of self-sufficiency and family security for refugees and is vital to the process of re-establishing the dignity of the human person and of realizing durable solutions to refugee problems;

(k) Encouraged all States hosting refugees to consider ways in which refugee employment in their countries might be facilitated and to examine their laws and practices, with a view to identifying and to removing, to the extent possible, existing obstacles to refugee employment;

(l) Noted the close connection between the problems of refugees and of stateless persons and invited States actively to explore and promote measures favourable to stateless persons, including accession to the 1954 Convention relating to the Status of Stateless Persons and the 1961 Convention on the Reduction Statelessness, as well as the adoption of legislation to protect the basic rights of stateless persons and to eliminate sources of statelessness;

(m) Emphasized the need, in the context of improving the general protection of refugees, for increased public awareness and information activities, bearing in mind the particular requirements of each country concerned and the valuable contribution which non-governmental organisations are able to make in this, as in other, areas of refugee protection;

(n) Noted with concern the growing phenomenon of refugees and asylum-seekers who, having found protection in one country, move in an irregular manner to another country and called upon the High Commissioner to implement paragraph (j) of Conclusion 36 (XXXVI).