Last Updated: Wednesday, 17 May 2023, 15:20 GMT

Status of Argentines Abroad

Publisher UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)
Publication Date 13 November 1984
Cite as UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR), Status of Argentines Abroad, 13 November 1984, available at: [accessed 18 May 2023]

A. Application of Cessation Clauses of the UNHCR Statute and the 1951 Refugee Convention

1. Recent developments in Argentina, including the restoration of constitutional rule in the country may duly be considered as events which make the cessation clauses contained in paragraph 6 A (e) of the UNHCR Statute, and Article I.C (5) of the 1951 Convention generally applicable to Argentines abroad. It is therefore considered that Argentines who left Argentina, particularly after 1976, and were recognized as refugees, can in principle no longer refuse to avail themselves of the protection of their country of nationality since the grounds for maintaining refugee status have ceased to exist.

2. With respect to refugee status under the 1951 Convention and 1967 Protocol, it must naturally be left to the governments of the asylum countries concerned to formally determine their position in this respect, should Representatives advise them of UNHCR position.

B. Legal and Practical Consequences

3. As far as UNHCR is concerned, persons falling under Section A above have in principle ceased to be refugees. Former refugees who still find themselves outside Argentina will henceforth have the status of ordinary aliens whose continued stay in the asylum country will depend upon the authorization of the Government concerned.

4. Argentines who consider that they have valid reasons for not availing themselves of the protection of the Argentine Government should be afforded an opportunity to present – either to UNHCR or to the authorities of their country of residence – the reasons why they wish to maintain their refugee status. Such cases should be examined on their merits, and if it appears that a favourable decision or recommendation may be indicated, should be referred to Headquarters for advice.

5. In the case of former refugees being allowed to continue residing in the host country, the UNHCR Representative should fix a reasonable time limit for the cessation of UNHCR material assistance. In countries where UNHCR is not represented, the UNDP Resident Co-ordinator may be consulted in this connection.

6. No assistance towards resettlement in third countries can be accorded to Argentines to whom the cessation clauses apply.

C. Individual Voluntary Repatriation

7. All Argentine refugees or former refugees who qualify for repatriation and who wish to be repatriated under our auspices should register with UNHCR or our operational partner for repatriation under the 1985 repatriation project by 31 March 1985, and should have reached their final destination by 31 August 1985. In countries where UNHCR is not represented, the UNDP Resident Co-ordinator may be consulted in this connection.

8. It is considered that, in the absence of strong reasons to the contrary, Argentine refugees or former refugees who have not repatriated by that date will have clearly demonstrated that they are not willing to return now to their country of origin in spite of the changes described in 2, thus excluding themselves from UNHCR repatriation assistance.

9. The need to complete a cycle of study prior to repatriation would ordinarily be a valid ground for postponing repatriation.

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