UNHCR: Ukraine must not extradite a person recognized as a refugee in the USA
The UNHCR has issued a statement in which it gives no names, however it appears to be referring to the already reported detention of ex- Tajik Prime Minister Abdumalik Abdullojonov who was detained, as on the Interpol list when he arrived in Kyiv from the USA on 5 February.
The Regional Representation of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees says that it would encourage the Ukrainian authorities to extend protection to the US recognized refugee detained at Boryspil airport on February 5, 2013. He is presently in detention pending a decision on the extradition request.
The UNHCR stresses that if one state recognizes a person as a refugee, then other countries must respect this and afford the person protection. Under no circumstances may refoulement take place, i.e. he must not be forcibly returned to his country of origin where it has been determined that he would face a well-founded fear of persecution.
“UNHCR praises the authorities for granting UNHCR access to this person. UNHCR remains in contact with the refugee and his Ukrainian lawyer, as well as the appropriate authorities, notably the General Prosecutor’s Office and the State Migration Service.
UNHCR remains confident that Ukraine will decline the extradition request and release this individual as soon as possible, in accordance with its obligations under international law. “