UNHCR: Gender, Migration and Human Rights Conference: Paper on "Distinction, Discretion, Discrimination: The new Frontiers of Gender Related Claims to Asylum"

Friday, October 4, 2013

The paper "Distinction, Discretion, Discrimination: the new frontiers of gender-related claims to asylum" was presented by Ms. Alice Edwards, Senior Legal Coordinator and Chief, Protection Policy and Legal Advice Section, Division of International Protection, UNHCR during the Gender, Migration and Human Rights Conference, organized by the European University Institute in Florence, Italy Uniteon 18-19 June 2012.

Ms. Edwards remarked that the question whether persecuted women can be refugees seems uncontroversial and the matter is now considered to be well-settled as a matter of international refugee law. However, it was noted that a closer scrutiny of case law suggests that there are multiple impediments to the recognition of women’s asylum claims. Ms. Edwards presented three emerging trends in the jurisprudence of a number of countries, which have an impact on the recognition of gender-related asylum claims, "distinction, discretion and discrimination", trends which the speaker considers to be the “new frontiers” to gender-related claims.

It should be highlighted that it was indicated that the UNHCR guidelines on Sexual Orientation and Gender Identity will be published within 2012 year whilst UNHCR will also be revising parts of its guidelines on'Membership of a particular Social Group' in 2013.

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