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Extraterritorial Effect of the Determination of Refugee Status

Executive Committee Meetings

Extraterritorial Effect of the Determination of Refugee Status
No. 12 (XXIX) - 1978

17 October 1978
Executive Committee 29th session. Contained in United Nations General Assembly Document No. 12A (A/33/12/Add.1). Conclusion endorsed by the Executive Committee of the High Commissioner's Programme upon the recommendation of the Sub-Committee of the Whole on International Protection of Refugees.

The Executive Committee,

(a) Considered that one of the essential aspects of refugee status, as defined by the 1951 Convention and the 1967 Protocol, is its international character;

(b) Recognized the desirability for maintenance and continuity of refugee status once it has been determined by a Contracting State;

(c) Noted that several provisions of the 1951 Convention enable a refugee residing in one Contracting State to exercise certain rights - as a refugee - in another Contracting State and that the exercise of such rights is not subject to a new determination of his refugee status;

(d) Noted that persons considered as refugees under Article 1 A (1) of the Convention maintain their refugee status unless they fall under a cessation or exclusion clause;

(e) Noted that refugees, holders of a Convention Travel Document issued by one Contracting State, are enabled to travel as refugees to other Contracting States;

(f) Considered that the very purpose of the 1951 Convention and the 1967 Protocol implies that refugee status determined by one Contracting State will be recognized also by the other Contracting States;

(g) Recognized, therefore, that refugee status as determined in one Contracting State should only be called into question by another Contracting State in exceptional cases when it appears that the person manifestly does not fulfil the requirements of the Convention, e.g. if facts become known indicating that the statements initially made were fraudulent or showing that the person concerned falls within the terms of a cessation or exclusion provision of the 1951 Convention;

(h) Further recognized that a decision by a Contracting State not to recognize refugee status does not preclude another Contracting State from examining a new request for refugee status made by the person concerned.