About Migration Dialogue
Migration Dialogue provides timely, factual and nonpartisan information and analysis of international migration issues through five major activities: the newsletters Migration News and Rural Migration News, Changing Face and other Research & Seminars, and the Sloan West Coast Program on Science and Engineering Workers.
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The UN Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees was signed in August 1951 to protect persons fleeing Nazi and Soviet persecution, and was extended in 1967 to all persons fleeing their country of citizenship due to a “well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion.” Signatory countries including the US promise not to refoul or return persons who arrive within their borders to persecution at home.
Asylum seekers or asylees arrive in a country and ask to be recognized as refugees and allowed to resettle as immigrants and eventually citizens. Refugees, on the other hand, are outside their countries of citizenship, and some are resettled in Canada, the US or other countries. Relatively few refugees are resettled each year, fewer than 250,000, while the number of asylum seekers is rising, topping one million in Germany and Sweden in 2015.