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UNHCR / IPU Handbook for parliamentarians launched in Hungary
Tuesday 19, June 2007
Budapest, June 19 (UNHCR) - The Hungarian edition of the latest Handbook for Parliamentarians published by UNHCR and the Inter-Parliamentary Union was launched today in Budapest by Mr. Lloyd Dakin, UNHCR's Regional Representative and Mr. László Mandur, Vice President of the Hungarian National Assembly.
The handbook is a practical tool for parliamentarians in drafting and implementing national legislation on statelessness and citizenship. The Hungarian edition follows the Polish and Slovak versions that were launched earlier in 2007. UNHCR also plans to publish the Slovene language version of the Handbook later this year.
In his speech at the launching ceremony in the Hungarian Parliament, Lloyd Dakin said "The situation of refugees and stateless persons is similar, as both categories lack a state which would take responsibility for protecting them. Therefore, refugees and stateless persons are in need of international protection and the new handbook will help Hungarian Members of Parliament to find adequate solutions for the situation of stateless persons in Hungary."
In the lack of a UN specialized agency to address the global issue of statelessness, UNHCR has been mandated by the UN General Assembly to co-ordinate international protection efforts to decrease and prevent statelessness.
Currently, there are an estimated 10 million refugees and 5.8 million registered stateless persons in the world benefiting from UNHCR assistance and protection. In Hungary, in 2006, there were 2,117 asylum-seekers out of whom 99 received refugee status. In 2005-2006, there were 19 stateless persons registered as asylum-seekers in Hungary.
Andrea Szobolits in Budapest, Hungary