Migration and Detention: Mapping the International Legal Terrain

This working paper maps the web of international and regional instruments and mechanisms that together make up the legal framework relevant to the phenomenon of migration-related detention, or the deprivation of liberty of non-citizens because of their status. This effort serves a number of purposes: First, it demonstrates the broad expanse of international instruments, above and beyond the core human rights conventions, that have provisions applicable to the rights of detained migrants. Second, it provides readers with a ready-made handbook for identifying how specific legal instruments and human rights bodies can have relevance to detention situations. Lastly, this legal mapping endeavor serves as a preliminary stage in the effort by the Global Detention Project to build a database aimed at measuring state compliance with international obligations.