UK Press Statement on Deportation of Tibetan Refugees
The United Kingdom deplores the government of Nepal’s deportation of 18 Tibetan asylum seekers, including eight minors, to China. Moreover the UK deeply regrets the absence of any recognised process or credible justification for the unacceptable actions taken against this group.
The UK is particularly dismayed over the manner that repeated appeals by various Diplomatic Missions in Kathmandu to release the refugees from prison and to process them in accordance with established practice and in co-operation with UNHCR were ignored by HMGN.
HMGN’s decision to deport asylum seekers and to deny UNHCR access to determine their status amounts to refoulement and is in clear contravention of international law. The action appears to unilaterally break a long standing agreement with UNHCR and is a worrying precedent for the future.
3 June 03