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Noam Schimmel's article "Trapped by Sovereignty" was published in World Affairs



In June 2022, an article by Senior Fellow Noam Schimmel was published in World Affairs Journal. The article “Trapped by Sovereignty: The Fate of Internally Displaced Persons and Their Lack of Equal Human Rights Protection Under International Law” critically evaluates the legal framework of the international law regime as it relates to internally displaced people.

It examines the systemic legal and humanitarian injustices that internally displaced people experience as a result of the frequently arbitrary distinctions made between them and refugees under international humanitarian law, international human rights law, and international refugee law.

It looks at how those who are internally displaced do not enjoy the same specific, devoted legal rights under international law as those who have fled their home nations and entered another country as refugees.

In the article, Noam argues that “the morally arbitrary distinction of the ability to cross a sovereign border in order to gain protection through asylum or refugee status discriminates against IDPs trapped by the sovereignty of their own oppressive state”. To support his argument, he investigates the arbitrary distinctions between IDPs and refugees in international refugee law, as well as the fundamental legal and humanitarian inequities that come from them.

  • To read Noam’s article, click here