Ongoing and concluded PhDs

PhD researcher or student information

Nicolette Busuttil

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Discipline: Law

Degrees BA: Bachelor of Laws (LLB), University of Malta


Master of Laws in Immigration Law (LLM), Queen Mary University of London

Doctor of Laws (LLD), University of Malta

PhD Research Information

To Protect, Tolerate or Expel? International protection obligations towards migrants with psychosocial disabilities facing removal

Brief description:

This dissertation focuses on migrants with mental healthcare needs in EU Member States who are at risk of removal to a State where mental healthcare is unavailable or falls short of established human rights standards. It explores a disability-sensitive interpretation of non-refoulement by reference to the impact of the UN Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities on EU Member States’ obligations towards these individuals with a view to identifying whether any such protection merely entails an exemption from deportation or whether it gives rise to an individual claim to a complementary protection status.


The project uses a legal-doctrinal methodology, drawing on a multi-disciplinary approach, combining knowledge from different legal branches (International Human Rights law, International Refugee and Migration Law, EU law) together with forced migration studies, public policy and mental health research.

Keywords: Charter of Fundamental Rights, mental health, non-refoulement, Returns Directive, Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities

Language(s) of writing: English

Country: United Kingdom

Home University:

Queen Mary University of London


School of Law

Supervisor: Violeta Moreno-Lax Elspeth Guild
Start date: 19-09-2016
PhD current status: PhD Ongoing
PhD research funded by: Queen Mary University of London
Name of grant: QMUL Research Studentship
Added to catalogue on: 08-06-2019

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