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Ukraine accedes to Convention and Protocol

Briefing notes

Ukraine accedes to Convention and Protocol

11 January 2002

Ukraine's parliament yesterday (Thursday) passed a law acceding to the 1951 Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees and its 1967 Protocol. This brings to 144 the number of countries which have acceded to the Convention. Ukraine was the only major European country which had not joined the Convention. Its accession means that now virtually every major country of West, East and Central Europe as well as in the Commonwealth of Independent States, with the sole exception of Uzbekistan, have now signed the convention. Countries that have not joined the Convention are now almost exclusively confined to the Middle East and Asia.

Ukraine's move comes just one month after a ground-breaking meeting of signatories to the Convention in Geneva, where 127 of the signatory countries reaffirmed their commitment to the Convention and recognised its enduring importance as the primary refugee protection instrument.