On Tuesday December 11, a RCAPS sponsored seminar was held at APU.
The seminar welcomed Mr. Daniel Alkhal (Senior Legal Officer, UNHCR Representation in Japan) whose lecture was titled, "Refugee Protection in Japan and Role of UNHCR".
On December 11 RCAPS welcomed Mr. Daniel Alkhal, Senior Legal Officer from the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) Tokyo to give a seminar titled, "Refugee Protection in Japan and Role of UNHCR". Prior to moving to Japan, Mr. Alkhal worked for UNHCR in Turkey, Bosnia and Herzegovina and Lebanon. In his seminar, Mr. Alkhal discussed basic issues and questions such as the definition of a refugee, "What is refugee 'Protection'", and "Who protects Refugees". He defined refugees as "persons who are not protected by their own country, while they are (or may become) victims of serious human rights violations". He also gave a brief history of UNHCR, and how it cooperates with government and civil society to ensure refugee protection. Mr. Alkhal said that the purpose of the UNHCR are to "protect refugees and to seek ways to help them restart their lives in a normal environment". He said that, "The UNHCR promotes international refugee agreements and monitors government compliance with international refugee law [and] seeks long-term or so-called 'durable' solutions, repatriation, local integration and resettlement". Mr. Alkhal also talked about UNHCR in Japan, its roles and the Refugee Status Determination (RSD) system in Japan. He discussed some of the many cases, over 10,000 case of determining refugee status, that he has worked on in his career and stressed that refugee "protection" entails all aspects of a refugee's life in a new country, from "entry to integration" into the society.