The Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees adopted on 28 July 1951 in Geneva provides the most comprehensive codification of the rights of refugees yet attempted. Consolidating previous international instruments relating to refugees, the 1951 Convention with its 1967 Protocol marks a cornerstone in the development of international refugee law. At present, there are 144 States Parties to one or both of these instruments, expressing a worldwide consensus on the definition of the term refugee and the fundamental rights to be granted to refugees. These facts demonstrate and underline the extraordinary significance of these instruments as the indispensable legal basis of international refugee law.
This Commentary provides for a systematic and comprehensive analysis of the 1951 Convention and the 1967 Protocol on an article-by-article basis, exposing the interrelationship between the different articles and discussing the latest developments in international refugee law. In addition, several thematic contributions analyse questions of international refugee law which are of general significance, such as regional developments and the relationship between refugee law and the law of the sea.