Mar 26, 2018

Ambazonia: Nigeria Hands over 47 Asylum-seekers to Cameroonian Authorities

In late January 2018, Nigeria forcefully returned 47 Southern Cameroonians asylum seekers to Cameroonian authorities. This decision constitutes a violation of the principle of non refoulement - enshrined in the Convention relating to the Status of Refugees - which prohibits States from returning a person to his/her country of origin whenever his/ her life or freedom would be threatened. UNPO urges the Nigerian government to refrain from returning asylum seekers back to their country and urges Cameroon to treat the returned group in accordance with human rights law and standards.

The article below was published by UNHCHR

UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, has learned with great concern of the forced return by Nigeria of 47 Cameroonians, who were handed over to the Cameroonian authorities on 26 January 2018.

Most of the individuals in question had submitted asylum claims. Their forcible return is in violation of the principle of non-refoulement, which constitutes the cornerstone of international refugee law.

The returns were carried out despite UNHCR’s efforts and engagement with the authorities.

UNHCR reminds Nigeria of its obligations under international and Nigerian law, and urges the Nigerian Government to refrain from forcible returns of Cameroonian asylum-seekers back to their country of origin.

We also urge the Government of Cameroon to ensure that the group is treated in accordance with human rights law and standards.

Photo Courtesy of Hanson Ghandi Tamfu @UNHCR