Immigration law definitely continues to be a hot topic in the news today, but one aspect that doesn’t often see a lot of press deals with refugees who flee their country due to persecution or abuse. However, there has been an interesting story recently in the Wall Street Journal about a Libyan woman who escaped to Tunisia after claiming that she was raped by forces loyal to Col. Muammar el-Qaddafi. This young woman now joins the more than 500,000 people worldwide who seek asylum every year.

In the United States, under the law of asylum implemented in 1980, refugees can win legal protection from being deported if they are outside of their country of nationality and fearing persecution or harm based on political opinion, race, religion, nationality or social group.

To learn more, we sat down with Harvard law professor, director of the Harvard Law School Immigration and Refugee Clinical Program and author of The Law of Asylum in the United States, Deborah Anker.

Professor Anker is one of the most highly regarded asylum scholars and practitioners in the U.S. Along with her work training students in asylum law and creating a foundation for clinics at law schools around the country, she has been a pioneer in the area of gender asylum and has co-drafted groundbreaking guidelines and amicus curiae briefs.

Thomson Reuters has had a long-standing history of supporting organizations dedicated to helping refugees gain asylum. Check out a story featuring our Chief Operating Officer Peter Warwick and learn more about his support of the PAIR Project.

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