UN rebukes Suella Braverman over her attack on refugee convention

  • 8 months ago
#englishnews #suellabraverman

News Article :-
The UN’s refugee agency has rebuked Suella Braverman after she claimed that world leaders had failed to make wholesale reform of human rights laws because of fears of being branded “racist or illiberal”.

The UNHCR issued a highly unusual statement on Tuesday defending the 1951 refugee convention and highlighting the UK’s record asylum claim backlog.

It came after the home secretary refused to rule out leaving the convention and said the international community had “collectively failed” to modernise international laws.
She also claimed that women and gay people must face more than discrimination if they are to qualify as a refugee – a statement that has been challenged by refugee charities.

Speaking to the American Enterprise Institute in Washington DC, Braverman claimed the international community had failed to reform the UN’s refugee convention of 1951 and the European convention on human rights (ECHR).

“The first [reason] is simply that it is very hard to renegotiate these instruments. The second is much more cynical. The fear of being branded a racist or illiberal. Any attempt to reform the refugee convention will see you smeared as anti-refugee,” she said.

She began her speech by claiming that uncontrolled and illegal migration posed an “existential challenge” to Europe and the US.

“I’m here in America to talk about a critical and shared global challenge: uncontrolled and illegal migration,” she said. “It is an existential challenge for the political and cultural institutions of the west.”

She claimed case law arising from the refugee convention had lowered the threshold so that asylum seekers needed only prove that they faced discrimination instead of a real risk of torture, death or violence.

“Where individuals are being persecuted, it is right that we offer sanctuary. But we will not be able to sustain an asylum system if, in effect, simply being gay, or a woman, and fearful of discrimination in your country of origin is sufficient to qualify for protection.”

Asked after the speech whether the UK would consider leaving the convention if changes were not delivered, Braverman said the government would do “whatever is required” to tackle the issue of migrants arriving via unauthorised routes.

She said: “The prime minister himself has said we will do whatever it takes to stop the boats and that is my position.”

In a statement, the UNHCR backed the convention and questioned Braverman’s distinction between persecution and discrimination.

“The refugee convention remains as relevant today as when it was adopted. Where individuals are at risk of persecution on the basis of their sexual orientation or gender identity, it is crucial that they are able to seek safety and protection,” it said.

Rejecting an overhaul of the convention, the UNHCR called for a “more consistent application of the convention and its underlying principle of resp