New, tighter laws broaden grounds for exclusion from refugee status - Motsoaledi
Home Affairs Minister Aaron Motsoaledi says the new amendments to refugee laws in South Africa are an attempt to close the gaps in the legislation.
The minister gazetted the Refugees Amendment Act, which came into effect from 1 January.
The new regulations include a ban on political activity and limitations on employment for refugees in the country.
It's because there are too many weaknesses and gaps in the act.Aaron Motsoaledi - Home Affairs Minister
The regulations don't just provide for that so-called ban on political activity.Aaron Motsoaledi - Home Affairs Minister
Motsoaledi says changes to the laws are much broader than what has been covered in the media.
He explains that the act includes several updated definitions, including what it means to classify as a dependent.
The legislation also expands its the list of reasons for which an asylum seeker could be excluded from obtaining refugee status.
According to Motsaoledi, applicants will be excluded, if:
- they have been involved in Schedule 2 crimes
- they have fraudulent documentation
- they were involved in war crimes
- they enjoy protections from another country
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