Main Debate

  • Various academics are challenging UNHCR’s view that voluntary repatriation is the preferred solution. Is this a valid criticism?

Main Points

  • Local integration v. voluntary repatriation

UNHCR Documents

  1. UNHCR, ‘Policy Framework and Implementation Strategy: UNHCR's Role in Support of the Return and Reintegration of Displaced Populations’, August 2008.
  2. UNHCR, ‘UNHCR's Role in Support of the Return and Reintegration of Displaced Populations: Policy Framework and Implementation Strategy’, 11 February 2008.
  3. UNHCR, ‘Legal Safety Issues in the Context of Voluntary Repatriation’, EC/54/SC/CRP.12, 7 June 2004.
  4. UNHCR, 'Handbook for Repatriation and Reintegration Activities', May 2004.
  5. UNHCR, ‘Global Consultations on International Protection/Third Track: Voluntary Repatriation’, EC/GC/02/5, 25 April 2002.



  1. M. Sharpe, ‘The 1969 African Refugee Convention: Innovations, Misconceptions, and Omissions’ McGill Law Journal, vol. 58, no 1, (2012), pp. 13-17.
  2. G. Okoth-Obbo, ‘Thirty Years on: A Legal Review of the 1969 OAU Refugee Convention Governing the Specific Aspects of Refugee Problems in Africa’, Refugee Survey Quarterly, vol. 20,no. 1, (2001), pp. 122-128.


  1. B. Harrell-Bond, ‘Repatriation: Under what Conditions is it the Most Desirable Solution for Refugees? An Agenda for Research’, African Studies Review, vol. 32, (1989).
  2. M. Zieck, UNHCR and Voluntary Repatriation of Refugees: A Legal Analysis, (The Hague: Martinus Nijhoff Publishers, 1997).