How can the international community solve the Syrian refugee issue?

Oct. 23,2019
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Although the refugee issue has long-time existed as a conundrum for the international community, the protection for refugees did not exist until the 20th Century. The international community began to give concerns to the special group after the end of the First World War. Since the beginning of the Syrian Civil War, numerous Syrians were reduced to refugees. Not only did they flood into the neighbor countries, but also Europe by crossing the Mediterranean Sea and detouring through the Balkan Peninsula, causing an unprecedented refugee influx for European countries. The refugee crisis affecting the Middle East, North Africa and Europe had a significant impact on relevant countries and regions in terms of national security and social stability. It reminded the international community that the refugee issue was evolving into an ever-worsening global issue. The issue has already gone out of the category of human rights and humanitarianism. It is closely related to intra-state or inter-state conflicts, failed states or state fragility and the inequality of international politics and economy. Meanwhile, it also challenges the maintenance of world order and justice and promotion of international cooperation.

Can the refugee issue be handled through global governance? According to the experience of Syrian refugee assistance, what are the premises necessary for the formation of global refugee governance?

The international refugee regime and the future of global refugee governance: lessons learned from the implementation of Syrian refugee protection by YAN Xiaoxiao, analysised on the connotation of the concept “refugee” in the current international political context from the perspective of the historical evolvement, discussed the main characteristics of the current international refugee regime, the effects and defects of the regime on the Syrian refugee assistance.

The result shows that: the current international refugee regime, with the UNHCR at its center, presents some characteristics that weaken its role in the refugee protection: there has been a large gap between budget and the fund received for a long time; developed countries who are the main donors are affecting the refugee assistance by defining the expenditure purpose; the overlapped immigration and refugee regimes give developed countries more options to avoid obligations stipulated by international refugee law; the refugee distribution for developed countries and less developed countries is unequal. In addition, the Syria refugee crisis also manifestly revealed the international refugee regime’s shortcomings in refugee assistance. In face of the large gap between the refugee protection demand and supply, it seems necessary to place the issue under the framework of global governance. However, some difficulties are still in the way of substantial global refugee governance.

Corresponding Author: YAN Xiaoxiao
CNKI Press Officer: LI Jingjing YANG Na

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