Displacement, Statelessness and Solutions: a study on protracted refugee situations in the Great Lakes (update July 2021)

Published: 21/Jul/2021


The Great Lakes sub-region is characterized by a number of protracted refugee situations. In some situations, several generations of refugees have been born in exile in their country of asylum. Statelessness can arise as both a cause and consequence of displacement, particularly for forcibly displaced populations who have spent a prolonged time in exile. In some instances, refugees have lost their ties with their country of origin, are unable to prove their legal ties to their country of origin, or might no longer be considered citizens by their country of origin, and remain without guaranteed access to the citizenship of their country of asylum and thus might be at risk of statelessness.

In the spirit of the 2019 Munyonyo Outcome Document of the 2019 High Level Conference of Ministers in Charge of Refugees in the Great Lakes, this study, undertaken by the International Conference on the Great Lakes Region (ICGLR) with the support of UNHCR, aims at exploring local integration for refugees. It focuses on those living in protracted situations, for whom voluntary return to the country of origin, or resettlement or complementary pathways to a  third country are not viable or available options, and who may also be at risk of statelessness.

The selected pilot countries serving as case studies for this regional research include Tanzania, Uganda, DRC, and Rwanda. Among these pilot countries, a selected number of protracted refugee situations will be studied, who will be further narrowed down based on length of stay in the country of asylum, risks of statelessness, and prospects for durable solutions, including potential for local integration in light of the pledges made at the 2019 High-Level Segment on Statelessness and 2019 Global Refugee Forum. More specifically, these will comprise the following refugee protracted groups whose members have spent more than 10-15 years and above in exile : (i) Congolese refugees in Rwanda, (ii) 1972 Burundian refugees in Tanzania, (iii) Rwandan refugees in DRC, as well as (iv) Congolese and South Sudanese refugees in Uganda.

Download English: https://data2.unhcr.org/en/documents/details/86160

Download French: https://data2.unhcr.org/en/documents/details/86427

Themes: Sub-regional Standards, Nationality and Refugees, Statelessness
Regions: Democratic Republic of Congo, Rwanda, Tanzania, Uganda
Year: 2021