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UNHCR is a prime example of a globalist institution out of control.

UN Refugee Agency Tries to Step on U.S. National Sovereignty

Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist image

By —— Bio and Archives November 15, 2018

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UN Refugee Agency Tries to Step on U.S. National Sovereignty
Members of the first of several Central American migrant “caravans” have already arrived at the U.S. border with Mexico. Some of the migrants scaled or crawled through barrier fences, attempting to move onto U.S. soil illegally. So far, Border Patrol agents have been dealing with the situation, but they may have more difficulty as more migrants arrive en masse and try to enter the United States illegally. It was to deter such entry that President Trump issued a proclamation that would deny political asylum to migrants crossing illegally into the country. They are required to enter only at the official ports of entry and wait patiently to be processed for possible asylum hearings.

Every nation has the sovereign right to control its own borders

Every nation has the sovereign right to control its own borders. Nevertheless, responding to President Trump’s proclamation, the UN refugee agency known as the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), released a statement last Friday saying that the U.S. must abide by international refugee protection accords as interpreted by the UN refugee agency. Without citing any specific, first hand evidence from the scene, the agency claimed that many of the migrants from Central America “are fleeing life-threatening violence or persecution.”

“UNHCR expects all countries, including the United States, to make sure any person in need of refugee protection and humanitarian assistance is able to receive both promptly and without obstruction, in accordance with the 1967 refugee Protocol [relating to the Status of Refugees] to which the United States is a party,” the UN refugee agency declared in its statement. The UN refugee agency claimed that requiring asylum seekers to present themselves only at official U.S. southern border ports of entry would fall short of this requirement because of insufficient reception capacity at the official ports of entry.  Such insufficient capacity, the UN refugee agency asserted, would result in “significant delays in northern Mexico” and force “many vulnerable asylum-seekers to turn in desperation to smugglers and cross the border irregularly.”

UN refugee agency is an unelected, unaccountable globalist bureaucracy

First, the UN refugee agency is an unelected, unaccountable globalist bureaucracy. UNHCR’s authority under the 1967 Protocol is to collect information on the condition of refugees and on laws, regulations and decrees relating to refugees, to issue reports and supervise the application of the provisions of the Protocol. These are administrative, not judicial, functions. UNHCR has no business telling sovereign member states of the United Nations what it “expects” their laws, regulations and decrees to say in order to be consistent with UNHCR’s interpretation of the 1951 Refugee Convention or the 1967 Protocol. If there is to be any interpretation of the original Convention or the subsequent Protocol by any international body, that function has been assigned by the Convention and the Protocol to the International Court of Justice.

Secondly, there is no language in the 1967 Protocol that would preclude a country’s sovereign right to establish official ports of entry as the only locations where asylum seekers are permitted to enter the country legally in order to apply for asylum.  UNHCR is effectively adding its own interpretive gloss that contradicts Article 2 of the original 1951 Refugee Convention. Article 2 states that “Every refugee has duties to the country in which he finds himself, which require in particular that he conform to its laws and regulations as well as to measures taken for the maintenance of public order.” The 1967 Protocol keeps this Article 2 of the Convention in effect.  It is the asylum-seekers outside of their own home countries who must conform to the laws and regulation and measures for the maintenance of public order of their destination countries, not the other way around.

Third, UNHCR has provided no answer to my question that I submitted to its spokesperson as to why asylum seekers from Central America, who are offered the opportunity to seek asylum in Mexico before they arrive at the U.S. border, have a legal right to reject such opportunity in favor of another country of their choosing.

Fourth, UNHCR has not responded to my request to explain the factual basis for its conclusion that many people on the move in Central America and Mexico are fleeing “persecution.” Reporters on the scene with the “caravans” have observed many young, unemployed men looking for economic opportunities in the United States. Some have criminal records. 

The 1951 Refugee Convention defines “refugee” as a person with a “well founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion, is outside the country of his nationality and is unable or, owing to such fear, is unwilling to avail himself of the protection of that country…” UNHCR has failed to say who it believes is responsible for the “persecution” it alleges has caused so many people to flee Central America, nor how such alleged persecution fits within the categories specified by the 1951 Refugee Convention. Moreover, the UN refugee agency has not pointed to any provision of the 1951 Refugee Convention or the 1967 Protocol stating that fleeing “life-threatening violence” of any sort and from any source or severe poverty entitles one to asylum status.

The United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees should stick to its information gathering, refugee humanitarian support, and other administrative functions. Instead, it has spun its own unaccountable interpretation of what it “expects” sovereign states to do, ignoring the real facts on the ground and the plain text of the 1951 Refugee Convention and the 1967 Protocol that it is supposed to help administer. UNHCR is a prime example of a globalist institution out of control.

Joseph A. Klein, CFP United Nations Columnist -- Bio and Archives | Comments

Joseph A. Klein is the author of Global Deception: The UN’s Stealth Assault on America’s Freedom.