Practice Relating to Rule 132. Return of Displaced Persons
Djibouti’s Law on the Status of Refugees in the Republic of Djibouti (2017) provides:
Article 2: Definition of the term asylum seeker
Under this law, the term asylum seeker or person applying for refugee status means any person who leaves the country of his or her nationality or, if he or she has no nationality, the country in which he or she was habitually resident in order to apply for refugee status in the Republic of Djibouti and who is awaiting a decision by the relevant competent authorities on his or her application.
Article 3: Definition of the term refugee
Under this law and in accordance with the Geneva Convention of 28 July 1951 relating to the Status of Refugees and its Protocol of 31 January 1967 and the OAU Convention of 10 September 1969 Governing the Specific Aspects of Refugee Problems in Africa, the term refugee shall mean every person:
b. who, owing to external aggression, occupation, foreign domination or events seriously disturbing public order in either part or the whole of his or her country of origin or nationality, is compelled to leave his or her place of habitual residence in order to seek refuge in another place outside his or her country of origin or nationality.
Article 5: Cases of cessation of refugee status
The refugee status granted to a person in accordance with this law shall come to an end in the following cases:
a. he or she has voluntarily re-availed himself or herself of the protection of the country of his or her nationality, or
e. he or she has voluntarily re-established himself or herself in the country which he or she left or outside which he or she remained owing to fear of persecution, or
f. if the circumstances in connection with which he or she was recognized as a refugee have ceased to exist, then he or she can no longer continue to refuse to avail himself or herself of the protection of the country of his or her nationality, or, in case where he or she has no nationality, the country of his or her habitual residence; or
g. being a person with no nationality, if the circumstances in connection with which he or she was recognized as a refugee have ceased to exist, he or she is able to return to the country in which he or she was habitually resident.
PROVISIONS APPLICABLE TO ASYLYUM SEEKERS
Article 11. Non-refoulement of asylum seekers
1. No person shall be returned to the frontier of, nor subjected to any measure that would require him or her to return to or remain in a territory where his or her life, physical integrity or liberty would be threatened on account of one of the reasons mentioned in article 3 of this law.
RIGHTS AND OBLIGATIONS OF REFUGEES AND ASYLUM SEEKERS
Article 17: Measures of protection
No refugee or asylum seeker may ever be extradited, expelled or returned in any manner whatsoever to the frontiers of a territory referred to in article 3 above.
Article 18: Conditions of expulsion
1. A refugee lawfully in the territory of the Republic of Djibouti shall not be expelled save on grounds of national security and public order.
2. The expulsion of such a refugee shall be only in pursuance of a decision reached in accordance with due process of law.
3. An expulsion decision shall be served on the refugee as well the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees who is responsible for finding a country of asylum within a reasonable timeframe.
4. Expulsion shall lead ipso facto
to the withdrawal of refugee status.
In 1994, Djibouti concluded the Agreement on Peace and National Reconciliation with the Front for the Restoration of Unity and Democracy (Front pour la Restauration de l’Unité et de la Démocratie – FRUD), which provides:
The FRUD shall encourage the return of refugees and displaced persons from abroad.
They (FRUD) shall provide the government with a list of the individuals concerned, so that the State can provide them with aid and assistance.