Out of sight, out of right? : the United States’ migrant interdiction program in international waters and in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba

Bibliography File Note.

Type
Thesis

Author
Azadeh Dastyari

Date
2013

Library Catalog
Primo

Language
eng

University
Thesis PhD–Monash University

Abstract
The United States operates a Migrant Interdiction Program (MIP) outside its territorial sea and in Guantánamo Bay, Cuba. This thesis provides a legal analysis of the MIP as it relates to Haitian and Cuban nationals interdicted by the United States. This thesis examines the MIP from the perspective of the United States’ municipal law, as well as a range of applicable international laws including international maritime, human rights and refugee law. This thesis argues that the United States’ MIP is largely compliant with its own municipal law and international maritime law, with the important exception of the United States’ practice of turning rescue operations into interdiction operations. However, the MIP places the United States in breach of numerous obligations under international human rights and refugee law. This thesis argues that the most viable means of remedying these violations is for the United States to cease the practice of turning rescue operations into interdictions; refrain from the use of Guantánamo Bay as a refugee processing and detention facility; conduct all status determinations in the United States; and resettle individuals owed protection from refoulement in the United States. This thesis will also argue that interdictees and their advocates cannot turn to the international legal regime or to the courts of the United States to compel the United States’ executive to abide by its international obligations. This is because of the lack of effective enforcement mechanisms in the international legal regime. Furthermore, international human rights and refugee law obligations discussed in this thesis are not enforceable in the courts of the United States without additional implementing legislation. The United States has not implemented all of its international obligations in municipal law, and those obligations that have been implemented are unlikely to apply to the United States’ executive in international waters and in Guantánamo Bay.

Short Title
Out of sight, out of right?

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