Wednesday 2 March 2011

ECHR, Counter-Terrorism and Refugees

Jens Vedsted-Hansen of Aarhus University School of Law has published an article entitled 'The European Convention on Human Rights, Counter-Terrorism, and Refugee Protection' in the Refugee Survey Quarterly (vol. 29, No. 4, pp.189-206). This the the abstract:

The legal developments pertaining to the non-refoulement principle under Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights provide ample illustration of the dilemmatic relationship between refugee protection and anti- or counter-terrorism measures. Following the terrorist attacks on 11 September 2001 a variety of attempts were made to have the European Court of Human Rights modify its interpretation of Article 3 as providing absolute protection against refoulement. The article depicts these efforts and the intertwined usage of law and policy measures by various actors in the European arena. The Court’s response is described and analysed extensively, demonstrating its insistence on fundamental protection principles. However, problems of national security are still perceived as serious by the executive branches of Governments and their security services, resulting in renewed efforts to control the movement and secure expulsion of persons considered dangerous. In that connection, diplomatic assurances have come to play an important role, partly beyond what can be considered sustainable, and thus an issue of further legal disputes.