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  The Refugees

San Jose Declaration

San Jose Declaration on Refugees and Displaced Persons under
the Auspices of the Costa Rican Government

International Colloquium in Commemoration of the Tenth Anniversary of The Cartagena
Declaration on Refugees


San José, 5-7 December 1994

The participants in the Colloquium therefore,


- That the foregoing Conclusions be duly taken into account in the search for solutions to pending problems related to refugees, returnees and displaced persons, and in addressing new challenges currently being faced throughout the continent;

- That the present document be proclaimed as the San José Declaration on Refugees and Displaced Persons;

- That the working documents, presentations and reports, as well as the Conclusions and Recommendations adopted and other documents of the Colloquium, be published, and that the Inter-American Institute of Human Rights, the United Nations High
Commissioner for Refugees, academic institutions and non-governmental organizations adopt the necessary measures for the widest distribution of this publication;

- That UNHCR and the Inter-American Institute of Human Rights, with the support of other pertinent organizations, be requested to sponsor a study of the scope of Article 22 (7) of the American Convention on Human Rights, as it relates the right to asylum, as integrating the right to seek and be granted asylum (Refugio) on the basis of those causes set forth in the refugee definition contained in the Cartagena Declaration, and that this study be subsequently submitted to the consideration of States;

- That the co-organizers be entrusted with officially forwarding the contents of the present Declaration to the Secretary General of the United Nations, to the Secretary General of the Organization of American States and to the Heads of State and Government of the American Continent, so that they in turn submit them to the competent organs;

- That the participants be requested to forward the contents of the present Declaration to their respective governments, so as to contribute to the application of its contents, to its dissemination as well as to its presentation to the Executive Committee of the UNHCR's Programme;

- That an extension of the mandate of the Representative of the Secretary General for Internally Displaced Persons be promoted, and that he considers incorporating the relevant Conclusions of this Colloquium in the reports he presents to the United Nations Human Rights Commission and the United Nations General Assembly;

- That the co-organizers and the Government of Costa Rica, with the support of UNDP, intercede before the World Bank, the International Monetary Fund and the Inter-American Development Bank, as well as before bilateral aid agencies, in order for them to include the specific needs of displaced populations within programmes aimed at the alleviation and eradication of extreme poverty;

- That the message sent to the Colloquium by the United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights be acknowledged with thanks, and that the contents of the present Declaration be forwarded to him.

Finally, the participants in the Colloquium express their deep appreciation to the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees and to the Inter-American Institute of Human Rights and, in addition, to the Government of Costa Rica for initiating and carrying out this important event. The participants express their gratitude for the personal interest shown by the President of Costa Rica, Mr. José María Figueres Olsen, and took the liberty to ask him, as he deems appropriate, to inform the participants of the Summit of the Americas, to be held in Miami from 9 to 11 December 1994, about the celebration of this Colloquium.

San José, 7 December 1994

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