Cover image for The state of the world's refugees, 2000 : fifty years of humanitarian action.
The state of the world's refugees, 2000 : fifty years of humanitarian action.
Cutts, Mark.
Publication Information:
Geneva : UNHCR ; New York : Oxford University Press, [2000]

Physical Description:
xi, 340 pages : illustrations (some color), maps ; 25 cm
General Note:
"Managing editor and principal author, Mark Cutts ... Main contributing authors, Joel Boutroue ... [et al.]"--P. [iii].
Added Author:

Format :


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HV640 .S677 2000 Adult Non-Fiction Central Closed Stacks

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Throughout history, war, communal violence and persecution have uprooted people. The last fifty years have been no exception. With over a million people recently forced from their homes in places like Kosovo, East Timor and Chechnya, it is clear that the problem of forced human displacementwill remain a major concern of the international community in the next millennium. The year 2000 edition of The State of the World's Refugees analyses the international community's efforts to protect and assist refugees in the fifty years since the creation of the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). It provides an incisive and comprehensiveaccount of the way in which approaches to the problem of forced human displacement have changed during that time. The book begins by examining the origins of international refugee law and the establishment of international organisations devoted to the protection of refugees. It then traces the major refugee crises of the past fifty years. Beginning with the flight of refugees from Hungary in 1956, it addressesthe refugee crises associated with decolonization in Africa, the Bangladesh war of independence, the exodus from Indochina in the 1970s and the Cold War crises of the 1980s in Afghanistan, the Horn of Africa and Central America. Looking at the challenges of the 1990s, it examines the break up ofthe Soviet Union, the Kurdish exodus from northern Iraq following the Gulf war, the increasingly restrictive asylum policies Europe and North America, and the recent crises in the Balkans, the Great Lakes region of Africa and the Caucasus. The book ends by looking at the future of refugeeprotection. It assesses the challenges of forging an international consensus on how to deal with the problem of forced human displacement in the twenty-first century. As well as analysing policy issues related to refugees, returnees, asylum seekers, internally displaced persons and stateless populations, the book provides a wealth of statistical tables, graphs and maps.

Author Notes

Headquartered in Geneva, Switzerland, the Office of the UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) (established December 14, 1950) protects and supports refugees at the request of a government or the United Nations and assists in their return or resettlement.

Reviews 1

Choice Review

Both an institutional history of United Nation efforts to assist refugees since 1950 and an overview of current problems faced by people uprooted by political conflict and war, this book is essential for library reference sections. Individual chapters cover modern refugee crises and forced migration by geographic area, such as Southeast Asia, Africa, the former Soviet Union, and the Balkans. Other chapters focus on thematic topics, such as refugee admissions policies in the industrialized world and peace negotiations in a number of countries that allowed refugees to return home. Each chapter contains current statistics, evocative black-and-white photographs, and informative maps and graphs. Boxed discussions between one-half and two pages in length address a wide range of fascinating subtopics in each chapter. For example, one subsection examines the relationship between refugees and the AIDS pandemic in Africa. Another reviews the use of international criminal tribunals to punish the perpetrators of persecution in the Balkans. A somewhat cursory concluding chapter is the only deficiency of this reference work, which is otherwise indispensable for all general and academic collections. J. Hein University of Wisconsin--Eau Claire

Table of Contents

Prefacep. ix
Forewordp. x
Introductionp. 1
International approaches to refugee protection
History of forced displacement
1 The early yearsp. 13
The UN Relief and Rehabilitation Administration
The International Refugee Organization
The establishment of UNHCR
The drafting of the 1951 UN Refugee Convention
The Hungarian crisis of 1956
1.1 High Commissioners Nansen and McDonaldp. 15
1.2 United Nations assistance to Palestinian refugeesp. 20
1.3 The 1951 UN Refugee Conventionp. 23
1.4 Germany's refugee compensation schemep. 28
1.5 Chinese refugees in Hong Kongp. 33
2 Decolonization in Africap. 37
The Algerian war of independence
Decolonization south of the Sahara
Rwanda and the Great Lakes region
Expanding the international refugee regime
2.1 Flight from Rhodesia, return to Zimbabwep. 45
2.2 The 1967 Protocol to the 1951 UN Refugee Conventionp. 53
2.3 The 1969 OAU Refugee Conventionp. 55
3 Rupture in South Asiap. 59
The birth of the state of Bangladesh
Repatriation and population exchanges
UNHCR's expanding role in Asia
3.1 The Tibetan refugee community in Indiap. 63
3.2 The expulsion of South Asians from Ugandap. 69
3.3 The plight of the Rohingyasp. 75
4 Flight from Indochinap. 79
War and exodus from Viet Nam
Cambodian refugees in Thailand
Laotian refugees in Thailand
Indochina as a turning point
4.1 International conferences on Indochinese refugeesp. 84
4.2 Piracy in the South China Seap. 87
4.3 Vietnamese refugees in the United Statesp. 90
4.4 Indochina's unaccompanied minorsp. 94
5 Proxy wars in Africa, Asia and Central Americap. 105
War and famine in the Horn of Africa
Afghan refugees in Pakistan and Iran
Mass displacement in Central America
Conflict resolution and repatriation
5.1 Refugee camps and settlementsp. 108
5.2 Mozambican refugees in Malawip. 112
5.3 The 1984 Cartagena Declarationp. 123
5.4 Chile under General Pinochetp. 126
6 Repatriation and peacebuilding in the early 1990sp. 133
The Namibian repatriation
Repatriation in Central America
The Cambodian repatriation
The Mozambican repatriation
Changing approaches to repatriation and reintegration
6.1 Protecting refugee childrenp. 138
6.2 Linking relief and developmentp. 142
6.3 Human rights and refugeesp. 150
7 Asylum in the industrialized worldp. 155
The evolution of asylum policy in Europe
Resettlement and asylum in North America
Asylum policies in Australia, New Zealand and Japan
Preserving the right to seek asylum
7.1 European Union asylum policyp. 159
7.2 Non-state agents of persecutionp. 163
7.3 Funding trendsp. 166
7.4 Haitian asylum seekersp. 176
8 Displacement in the former Soviet regionp. 185
The Soviet legacy
Conflicts in the South Caucasus and Tajikistan
New challenges in CIS countries
Conflict in the North Caucasus
The challenges ahead
8.1 Statelessness and disputed citizenshipp. 189
8.2 Non-governmental organizationsp. 194
8.3 Armed attacks on humanitarian personnelp. 206
9 War and humanitarian action: Iraq and the Balkansp. 211
The Kurdish crisis in northern Iraq
War in Croatia and in Bosnia and Herzegovina
The Kosovo crisis
Limits of humanitarian action in times of war
9.1 Internally displaced personsp. 214
9.2 East Timor: the cost of independencep. 236
9.3 International criminal justicep. 240
10 The Rwandan genocide and its aftermathp. 245
The mass exodus from Rwanda
Flight from the refugee camps
Searching for lost refugees in Zaire
A new phase in the Congolese war
10.1 The problem of militarized refugee campsp. 248
10.2 Refugees and the AIDS pandemicp. 253
10.3 Somalia: from exodus to diasporap. 256
10.4 War and displacement in West Africap. 260
10.5 Western Sahara: refugees in the desertp. 266
11 The changing dynamics of displacementp. 275
Endnotesp. 288
Technical notes on statistical informationp. 301
1 States party to the 1951 UN Refugee Convention, the 1967 Protocol, the 1969 OAU Refugee Convention and members of UNHCR's Executive Committee (EXCOM), as on 31 December 1999p. 302
2 Number of refugees and others of concern to UNHCR, 31 December 1999p. 306
3 Estimated number of refugees by region, 1950-99p. 310
4 Refugee populations by main country of asylum, 1980-99p. 311
5 Largest refugee populations by origin, 1980-99p. 314
6 Refugee populations by origin and country/territory of asylum, 31 December 1999p. 316
7 Refugees per 1,000 inhabitants: top 40 countries as on 31 December 1999p. 319
8 Number of refugees in the Great Lakes region of Africa, 1960-99p. 320
9 Asylum applications and refugee admissions to selected industrialized states, 1990-99p. 321
10 Main country/territory of origin of asylum seekers in Western Europe, 1990-99p. 325
11 UN High Commissioners for Refugees, 1951-2000p. 326
Further readingp. 328
Indexp. 334