Historical case studies
One of the main challenges regarding Protracted Refugee Situations is to ensure access to durable solutions for affected refugees early on. To facilitate this, in most cases interstate cooperation is needed, and effective and comprehensive policies have to be agreed on. Looking at successful examples in the past can help identify strategies to reach international consensus and attain durable solutions. In this section, therefore, three historical case studies are presented.
First, the resolution of the post World War II refugee crisis in Europe with the concomitant emergence of an international refugee regime provides valuable lessons in terms of international cooperation. In the late 1980s and early 1990s, the International Conference on Central American Refugees (CIREFCA) and the Comprehensive Plan of Action for Indochinese Refugees (CPA) again demonstrated that global burden-sharing is feasible, and that it can facilitate the attainment of durable solutions for refugees trapped in PRS. Moreover, CIREFCA and the CPA are of particular significance due to the leading role the UNHCR took in terms of encouraging and coordinating international cooperation.
Spanning different time periods and geographical areas, all three case studies presented here provide valuable insights and lessons to be learned for policy responses to protracted refugee situations continuing today.