Statelessness Guidelines

UNHCR has begun issuing “Guidelines on Statelessness.” The aim is to “provide interpretive legal guidance for governments, NGOs, legal practitioners, decision-makers and the judiciary, as well as for UNHCR staff and other UN agencies involved in addressing statelessness.” Ultimately, they will culminate in a UNHCR Handbook on Statelessness.

Here are the first two:

  • Guidelines on Statelessness No. 1: The Definition of ‘Stateless Person’ in Article 1(1) of the 1954 Convention relating to the Status of Stateless Persons (UNHCR, Feb. 2012) [text]
  • Guidelines on Statelessness No. 2: Procedures for Determining Whether an Individual is a Stateless Person (UNHCR, April 2012) [text]

The guidelines are a result of a series of expert consultations that were held to commemorate the 50th Anniversary of the 1961 Convention on the Reduction of Statelessness.  The meetings included:

  • Expert Meeting on the Concept of Stateless Persons under International Law, Prato, Italy, 27-28 May 2010 [summary conclusions] [background paper]
  • Expert Meeting on Statelessness Determination Procedures & Statelessness Status at the National Level, Geneva, 6-7 December 2010 [summary conclusions]
  • Expert Meeting on Interpreting the 1961 Statelessness Convention and Preventing Statelessness among Children, Dakar, 23-24 May 2011 [summary conclusions]

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