Scope of the principle of non-refoulement in contemporary border management: evolving areas of law

EU Member States are increasingly involved in border management activities on the high seas, within – or i cooperation with – third countries, and at the EU’s borders. Such activities entail risks of violating the principle of non-refoulement, the cornerstone of the international legal regime for the protection of refugees, which prohibits returning individuals to a risk of persecution. This report aims to encourage fundamental-rights compliant approaches to border management, including by highlighting potential grey areas.

The analysis presented is complemented by concrete guidance on how to reduce the risk of refoulement in these situations – a practical tool developed with the input of experts during a meeting held in Vienna in March of 2016.