Mini-feature on Post-deportation risks and monitoring: Editors’ Introduction

People whose application for asylum has been refused are often deported, usually to their country of origin. Little is known, however, about what happens to them on that return journey, on arrival in the country to which they are deported, and during the weeks and months that follow. Deportees are generally out of sight, and therefore quickly out of mind. But many of them are vulnerable and face considerable risks after deportation. These risks include loss of belongings, lack of identity papers, homelessness, destitution, trauma, depression, suicide, extortion, detention, and inhumane and degrading treatment – indicators that deportation in some cases may in fact constitute refoulement.

The articles in this mini-feature examine four cases:

  • failed asylum seekers deported to the Democratic Republic of Congo, Sri Lanka and Eritrea
  • risks for formerly unaccompanied minors deported to Afghanistan
  • failed asylum seekers deported to Uganda
  • the fate of people returned to Turkey under the EU-Turkey deal.


Based on insights from the ground, all four articles show the need for independent post-deportation monitoring.


Post-deportation resources

Post-Deportation Monitoring Network
This project has three main goals: to protect and assist rejected asylum seekers after deportation; to document and report post-deportation human rights violations; and to use such reports to lobby governments in host countries to change their asylum policies. The project seeks to protect and assist deportees by connecting lawyers and NGOs in deporting countries with organisations in countries of origin. The network’s online directory provides contact details.
If you or your organisation are interested in being listed in the directory, please contact and provide a brief description of the support you can provide to deportees.

Deportation Global Information Project
The Deportation Global Information Project (based at Boston College’s Center for Human Rights and International Justice) gathers and makes accessible data and research regarding deportation and the challenges faced by deported and expelled persons and their families. Resources include academic research from a variety of disciplines (law, social sciences, psychology, etc) and reports issued by governments, NGOs, intergovernmental organisations and the media.
To submit papers or reports for inclusion, please use the Submit Info tab on the website. Please send any feedback to


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