June 20 Is International Refugee Day
International Refugee Day has been annually celebrated on June 20 since the adoption of a resolution by the United Nations in 2000. On this day, special attention is paid to the importance of realizing the rights of refugees and raising awareness of the challenges they face.
The Public Defender wants to emphasize the importance of protecting the rights of refugees around the world in the context of the pandemic. The response and assistance of the Georgian authorities in this direction, which has been extended to some internationally protected persons as well, is welcome, but it should also be noted that asylum seekers have been left behind the programme. It is a constitutional obligation of the State to ensure the protection of their rights too, especially in the context of the pandemic, as the closure of borders between the countries, as well as social and health challenges, has significantly worsened the situation of asylum seekers in the country where they seek asylum due to war, conflicts or persecution due to mass human rights violations in their countries. Therefore, it is important for the State to protect and realize the rights of asylum seekers and internationally protected people as much as possible.
Protecting the rights of refugees is one of the priorities of the Public Defender's Office. The Public Defender’s Annual Report on the Situation of Human Rights and Freedoms includes a special chapter on the rights situation of asylum seekers and internationally protected people, offering recommendations and focusing on the challenges identified by the Public Defender during monitoring these persons’ rights.
The Public Defender’s Office joins the celebration of the International Refugee Day in the world and hopes that the State will improve the rights situation of refugees and promote long-term solutions to their problems, taking into account the obligations recognized by international and domestic laws.