Asylum Research Centre (ARC), formerly Asylum Research Consultancy, was set up by Liz Williams and Stephanie Huber in 2010. In 2016 ARC Foundation was incorporated as a charitable incorporated organisation. Our aim is to raise standards in the production and use of COI and the refugee status determination process as a whole, to improve the realisation of asylum seekers’ and refugees’ rights and entitlements and to ensure that those in need of protection are recognised as such.
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Sri Lanka: Country report
- October 2020
Today ARC launches its three year project Comparative Analysis of U.S Department of State Country Reports on Human Rights Practices (2016-2019).
The research compared the State Department’s assessment of the situation in Eritrea, Iran, Iraq, Pakistan and Sudan in 2016, the last year of President Obama’s administration, with the subsequent reports produced by President Trump’s administration covering events in 2017, 2018 and 2019.
Notable content changes identified were not consistent with the situation on the ground as documented by other sources and have the effect of downplaying the seriousness of the human rights situations in these countries. The principle changes related to women’s rights, civil and political rights, and issues relating to LGBTI persons.
- Press release including responses to our report;
- Eritrea chapter;
- Iran chapter;
- Iraq chapter;
- Pakistan chapter;
- Sudan chapter;
- Introduction & Methodology.
The report has been covered by The Guardian, Trump administration alters and downplays human rights abuses in reports, 21 October 2020
- September 2020
ARC Foundation updated its Thematic COI Sources toolkit, which can be downloaded for free here.
- July 2020
ARC Foundation is pleased to announce the publication of its:
- Observations on the Report of a Home Office fact-finding mission to Sri Lanka, Conducted between 28 September and 5 October 2019, 20 January; and
- Comments on the Australian Government Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade’s (DFAT) Country Information Report on Sri Lanka of 4 November 2019
Both reports support ARC Foundation’s aim to promote COI research standards and methodologies to ensure that decision makers have access to high quality Country of Origin information.
- July 2020
ARC is pleased to announce its new country report on Sri Lanka, which presents information from publicly accessible sources published between 1st January 2019 and 19th May 2020.
- July 2020
In collaboration with the Dutch Council for Refugees we have published: Commentary on the EASO Country of Origin Information Reports on Syria (December 2019 – May 2020).
This report details our observations on the various reports’ methodologies and comments on specific issues/profiles of importance for an assessment of international protection claims for Syrians, namely:
- Treatment of persons perceived to be opposing the government;
- Treatment of returnees from abroad;
- Forcible conscription by government forces, treatment of draft evaders, deserters and defectors;
- Availability and effectiveness of state protection in general and specifically for women and LGBTI individuals in Syrian government controlled areas.
- May 2020
We have published Vietnam: Returned victims of trafficking: Issues affecting the likelihood of re-trafficking, produced jointly by Asylos and Asylum Research Centre (ARC) Foundation and kindly funded by the Paul Hamlyn Foundation.
Our report combines relevant and timely publicly available material with new information generated by interviewing six individuals with authoritative knowledge on the situation of returned victims of trafficking to Vietnam. We hope that the report will help fill the gap in the COI literature and thus to contribute to a more transparent and informed debate about the topic.
UK legal representatives using this report are advised to read it alongside this legal note by Legal Researcher David Neale of Garden Court Chambers. The note analyses our reports’ main findings and provides practical guidance to apply its findings to your case.
- May 2020
ARC Foundation is pleased to announce the publication of its 2019 Annual Report outlining the organisation’s main streams of work aiming to drive up standards in the quality and use of Country of Origin Information (COI) in the refugee status determination process.