Forgotten people: former Liberian refugees in Ghana

Published: 1/May/2016
Source: Forced Migration Review

By Naohiko Omata

More than three years after the cessation of refugee status for Liberian refugees, the viability of the ECOWAS integration scheme implemented as a solution for those Liberians who continued to stay in Ghana is seen to be limited.

Although exile can be interminably protracted, refugee status is not granted permanently. According to the 1951 Refugee Convention, when the circumstances under which people were recognised as refugees no longer exist (the premise of ‘ceased circumstances’), the Cessation Clause may be invoked while they are still in a country of asylum.

Through this process thousands of Liberian refugees in Ghana saw the end of their refugee status in 2012, after which UNHCR (the UN Refugee Agency) brought in an integration scheme through the freedom of movement protocol of the Economic Community of West African States (ECOWAS) as a ‘sub-regional solution’ for Liberians who remained in exile.

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Themes: Nationality and Refugees
Regions: Ghana, Liberia
Year: 2016