Amicus Brief on Supreme Court Refugee Case

Jastram and UNHCR Co-Author Amicus Brief on Supreme Court Refugee Case

US immigration law reflects our international treaty obligations to provide protection to refugees fleeing from persecution.  However, refugees who have themselves persecuted others are not eligible for asylum.  The Supreme Court recently granted certiorari in Negusie v Mukasey to resolve a circuit split over whether refugees who were forced to participate in the persecution of others should be barred from asylum.  Kate Jastram, a Warren Institute affiliated scholar and Berkeley Law lecturer in residence, co-authored an amicus brief with the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees arguing that duress should be considered a defense to personal responsibility for such excludable acts, based on Congress' clear intent when enacting the 1980 Refugee Act to conform US immigration law with international law.

Read the amicus brief