LAWSG122 International and European Refugee Law
|LAWSG122: INTERNATIONAL AND EUROPEAN REFUGEE LAW|
|Credit value:||15 credits (7.5 ECTS, 150 learning hours)|
|Teaching Delivery:||10 x 2-hour weekly seminars, Term One|
|Who may enrol:||Any UCL Master’s student|
|Must not be taken with:||None|
|Qualifying module for:||LLM in Criminal Justice, Family and Social Welfare;
LLM in European Union Law;
LLM in Human Rights Law;
LLM in International Law;
LLM in Public Law
|Introductory video||Currently there is no introductory video for this module|
|Practice Assessment:||Opportunity for feedback on one optional practice essay or draft of final essay|
|Final Assessment:||One 3,000-word essay (100%)|
The 1951 Convention relating to the Status of Refugees is now over 65 years old. At the end of 2015 the UNHCR reported that the number of people forcibly uprooted by conflict and persecution stood at 65.3 million worldwide – the highest level ever recorded. Since the beginning of 2015, over one and half million people sought refuge in Europe alone, while over 12,000 of them died trying to reach safety. Against this background, international debates continue regarding the nature of the protection that refugees should be granted, the role of the international community, and the obligations of receiving countries towards refugees.
This module will provide a critical understanding of both the international and European regime of refugee protection. The first part of the module will cover the international legal framework for refugee protection, its main challenges and shortcomings. A review of key jurisprudence within international, regional, and national courts will provide an understanding of how refugee and asylum law is interpreted and implemented. Main areas of discussion will include international criteria for the attainment, exclusion and withdrawal of refugee status, the development of the nonrefoulement principle, and the changing role of UNHCR. Subsequent seminars will explore the concept of complementary protection offered by other instruments of international law and the European Convention of Human Rights. The second half of the module will focus on the development of a Common European Asylum System by the European Union. The EU is the only example worldwide where a large number of countries are in the process of harmonising their national interpretation of international refugee protection obligations. Against the background of the recent refugee crisis, the EU offers valuable insights into the difficulties that prevent a coherent application of refugee protection instruments. Where appropriate, comparisons will be drawn with other regions worldwide. Finally, the module will consider whether the 1951 Refugee Convention is still capable of adequately catering for refugee movements in the 21st century.
By the end of the module, students should be in a position to:
Students will be expected to familiarise themselves with topics in advance of the seminars and to contribute to the seminars through discussion and debate groups.
Module reading lists and other module materials will be provided via online module pages, available at the beginning of term once students have enrolled.