Protection Act Refugees


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LAW 251

2012 JUNE 20 ACT



For the Plurinational Legislative Assembly, it has The following Law:


D E C R E T A:






Article 1. (OBJECT). This Law is intended to establish the protection regime for persons

refugees and applicants of that condition, in accordance with the Constitution of the State, the Convention on the Status of Refugees In 1951 and its 1967 Protocol, and other international human rights instruments, ratified by Bolivia.

Article 2. (SCOPE OF APPLICATION). This Law applies to any foreign person found in

refugee status or request such a condition, in the Bolivian territory.

Article 3. (REACH).

I. The recognition of a person as a refugee is a political and humanitarian act, with declarative effect and implies

an abstention from participating in political activities.

II. The protection that the State provides to any person recognized as a refugee is jurisdictional.



Article 4. (NO RETURN).

I. No refugee or applicant of such condition, whose application is pending final determination, may

be returned to his or her country of origin or to another country where his life, security or freedom is in danger of any of the causes that resulted in the recognition or application of the refugee status.

II. For the purposes of applying this Article, border rejection and extradition are considered forms of

return of the person.


I. The recognition of the refugee status will have the effect of any request and

extradition procedure initiated against them.

II. The interposition of a request for the status of a refugee person shall have suspensory effect on the execution of the

extradition of the applicant, until the procedure for determining that condition has been concluded by firm resolution.

Article 6. (NO EXPULSION).

I. No refugee or applicant for such a condition may be expelled from the country.

II. Expulsion shall only be carried out for reasons of State or public order security, prior due process,

in accordance with the provisions of the Convention on the Status of Refugees of 1951 and the Legal Order National.

Article 7. (NO SANTION). The Bolivian State shall not impose criminal or administrative penalties, because of the

entry or irregular presence of the person requesting refugee status.

Article 8. (NO DISCRIMINATION). The provisions of this Law shall apply to all refugees.

and applicant for such a condition, without discrimination according to the provisions of Article 14 of the Constitution of the State and Law No. 045 Against Racism and All Forms of Discrimination.

Article 9. (FAMILY UNIT).

I. The unity of the family as a natural and fundamental element of society is an essential right of the person

refugee and his family.

II. By virtue of that principle, the condition of a refugee to the spouse or living person, ascendants,

descendants, and to the sisters and brothers who are economically dependent on the refugee, as well as to the girls, children, shall be extended. adolescents and adults who are under their tutelage.

III. In no event shall the condition of refugee be extended to the person who has incurred any of


exclusion provided for in Article 17 of this Law.


I. Any information referred to a refugee or applicant for such a condition is confidential.

II. Public servants and public servants, as well as the private entities involved, shall refrain from disclosing or disseminating any information relating to any refugee or applicant for such a condition, except for exceptions. established in the Rules of Procedure of this Law.

Article 11. (GRITY).

I. The procedure followed by a person applying to the National Refugee Commission-CONARE does not have


II. It will be exempted from payment of stamps, securities and any other payment, in the procedures that every refugee person

must carry out in the various public offices to obtain their immigration stay and the identity document of foreign person.

III. The emerging costs of the completion of the paragrafos I and II, will be assumed from the budget of the

Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Government, through the Directorate General of Migration and the Service General of Personal Identification, according to your competencies.

Article 12. (ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANCE). The competent authorities shall assist any refugee and

applicant for the status of a refugee, in accordance with the 1951 Convention on the Status of Refugees and the Regulation of the



Article 13. (RIGHTS).

I. Every refugee and applicant for such a condition enjoys all the rights and freedoms recognized in the

National Legal Order, as well as in the international human rights instruments ratified by Bolivia, in the rights recognised in the 1951 Convention on the Status of Refugees.

II. The refugee or applicant of such a condition shall be granted the most favourable treatment possible.

III. No provision of the National Legal Order may be applied in violation of any other rights

and benefits granted to a refugee person.

Article 14. (DUTIES).

I. Every refugee and applicant of such a condition has a duty to abide by the Constitution of the State, the laws and

regulations in force, as well as all measures taken for the maintenance of public order and the State security.

II. Failure to comply with the duties will result in the imposition of sanctions, in accordance with the Rules of Procedure, without

prejudice to the civil and/or criminal responsibilities that may correspond.





Article 15. (DEFINITION).

I. For the purposes of this Law, it is understood interchangeably by a refugee person to whom:

Due to well-founded fears of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or opinions (a) a policy which is outside the country of its nationality and which does not, on account of those fears, benefit from the protection of such a country; or which, without nationality and, as a result of such events, is outside the country where before he had habitual residence, he could not or would not want, because of these fears, return to him.

He has fled his country of nationality or, lacking nationality, has fled his country of habitual residence because his life, security or freedom have been threatened by widespread violence, foreign aggression, internal conflicts, the massive violation of human rights or other circumstances that have seriously disturbed public order.

II. It will also be considered as a refugee to the one who at the time of leaving the country nationality or

habitual residence did not meet the conditions described above, but as a consequence of events occurring after its departure, fully complies with the inclusion clauses set out in points (a) or (b) of this Article.

Article 16. (GENDER, AGE AND DIVERSITY). For the purposes of applying Article 15 of this Law,

will consider favorably the gender, age, and diversity of the person who applies for the status of a refugee.

Article 17. (EXCLUSIVE). Exclude from refugee status to the requesting person, for which

there are reasonable grounds to consider:

That has committed crimes against peace, war crimes or crimes against humanity, defined in international instruments.

That has committed a serious common crime, outside the country of refuge, before being admitted to it as a refugee.

That has been guilty of acts contrary to the purposes and principles of the United Nations.



Article 18. (CESATION).

I. Cesara the condition of the refugee person when any of the following causes are present:

If you have voluntarily welcomed the protection of the country of your nationality again.

If you have lost your nationality, has voluntarily recovered her.

If you have acquired a new nationality and enjoy the protection of the country of your new nationality.

If you have voluntarily established yourself again in the country you had abandoned or out of which he had remained for fear of being persecuted.

Yes for the circumstances under which she was recognised as a refugee have disappeared, she cannot continue to refuse to benefit from the protection of the country of her nationality.

If this is a person who has no nationality and, Because the circumstances under which she was recognized as a refugee have disappeared, she is in a position to return to the country where she previously had her habitual residence.

II. The condition of that refugee person understood in points (e) and (f) of this Article shall not cease, which may

invoke overriding reasons arising from previous serious persecutions.

III. a person who has ceased to be a refugee, may be granted a legal status that authorizes his/her stay

in the country, in consideration of the length of stay and his degree of integration, of his family and of his dependents, according to the current migration regulations.

Article 19. (CANCELLATION).

I. The recognition of the status of a refugee shall not be subject to review, except where knowledge is taken

that the refugee person concealed or distorted the material facts on which his application was based in such a way that, have been known, would have led to the denial of recognition as such.

II. In case the fact that prompted the review is checked, the person's condition will be cancelled


Article 20. (REVOKING). The condition of the refugee person may be revoked if after granted,

the person has become involved in some of the acts referred to in points (a) and (c) of Article 17 of this Law.





Article 21. (COMPETITION).

I. The National Refugee Commission? CONARE constitutes the competent authority to determine the condition of

a person's refugee, as well as exclusion, cessation, cancellation, revocation, and expulsion.

II. It will also contribute to the protection and search for durable solutions of people recognized as

refugees, in accordance with the privileges conferred in this Law.

Article 22. (CONTRAINING).

I. The CONARE will be composed of a titular representative and his alternate of the following Levels:

1. Executive Level: Constituted by the following Ministries:

Ministry of Foreign Affairs, which will exercise the Presidency and representation of CONARE's actions.

Ministry of Government.

Ministry of Justice.

2. Advisory Level: Constituted by the Regional Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for

UNHCR, which will advise CONARE on technical aspects of specific cases submitted to it, and will also assist in the exercise of its powers.

3. Operational Level: In charge of the Agency Implementing the UNHCR's Programs in Bolivia, which in the

framework of an Inter-Institutional Agreement signed with CONARE, will implement and recommend the actions necessary to facilitate the integration of refugees.

II. The Executive Level will have the right to voice and vote; the Advisory and Operational Levels will be able to participate in the

CONARE meetings, with the right to voice and without the right to vote.

Article 23. (DESIGNATION). The members of CONARE will be expressly designated by the maximum

authorities of the institution to which they represent, and they need to have knowledge, experience and training on the subject of human rights. of refugees, according to regulation.

Article 24. (ATTRIBUTIONS). The CONARE will have the following attributions:

Resolve the shelter requests that are submitted for consideration.

Grant a temporary document to the requesting person who credits their refugee status and the renewal of the document.

Resolve the exclusion, cessation, cancellation, recall, and expulsion cases.

Call representatives from other public or private entities to CONARE meetings, depending on the circumstances that require it.

Resolver requests for family reunification of refugees.

Resolving the abandonment and withdrawal of shelter requests.

Collect from public and private entities, administrative bodies, and state agencies in general, all information, documentation, and certifications that requires to perform their duties.

Call for an extended interview, in case of doubt about the statements of the requesting person or their family members, including girls, children, and adolescents.

Ensure the impartiality and confidentiality of all its actions and To ensure that other state authorities involved in the protection and documentation processes of refugee persons observe this conduct.

Request the UNHCR for the respective technical advice, in order to resolve certain special circumstances that may arise.

Promote the protection and protection of the rights of all refugees in the Bolivian territory, in accordance with the 1951 Convention and its 1967 Protocol.

Promote and disseminate social awareness activities on the humanitarian dimension of the refugee person.

Develop, adopt and implement public policies on the protection of the refugee.

Coassist in the protection, search and implementation of durable solutions for all refugees in Bolivia.



Article 25. (FUNTION). The Technical Secretariat of CONARE will have the function to promote and promote the

procedure for determining the status of a refugee and to assist CONARE members, in accordance with their functions within the Foreign Ministry structure.

Article 26. (DESIGNATION). The position of Technical Secretary or Technical Secretary shall be exercised by a

public servant or designated public servant, who must have experience, knowledge and suitability in the matter, whose designation corresponds to the Foreign Ministry, according to regulations.

Article 27. (FUNTIONS). The CONARE Technical Secretariat will have the following functions:

Receive requests for refugee status in the country.

Inform the requesting person about their rights and duties, as well as provide necessary information and advice.

Rissue to CONARE members, person condition requests refugee and their background.

Grant, per CONARE instruction, a temporary certification to the requesting person and the respective renewal, until their condition is defined.

Interview the person the applicant, making the necessary steps to provide the interpreter if necessary and

Issue technical-legal opinions regarding requests for the refugee status.

Organize CONARE meetings and lift records of them.

Give consideration to CONARE resolutions of resolved cases.

Notify the decisions of CONARE to the applicant.

Coordinate with other immigration and border authorities, to ensure access to the people procedure

applicants for the refugee status.

Extend certifications and legalized resolutions to the refugee person.





Article 28. (REGULATIONS). The procedure for determining the condition of the person

shall be governed by the provisions of this Law and its Rules of Procedure. Recommendations in the Manual of Procedures and Criteria for determining the UNHCR's Status of Refugees and other related guidelines may also be considered.

Article 29. (RIGHTS AND DUTIES).

I. During the procedure, the applicant and his/her family members will have the following rights:

To be interviewed individually by a person of the same sex.

To be assisted by an interpreter qualified, when the language of the requesting person is not Spanish.

To receive a temporary document that allows you to remain in a regular situation on Bolivian territory.

To receive information about your rights and duties, as well as the procedure for determining the refugee status.

To be notified with CONARE decisions.

To challenge the CONARE's reported decisions.

To request certifications and legalizations related to your request.

II. During the procedure, the requesting person, his or her family members and dependents will have the following duties:

Provide reliable information about your person and the facts and reasons underlying your request.

Carry out tests and provide explanations for the eventual insufficiency or lack thereof.

Provide clear and concrete answers to the questions asked in the interview.

Set legal address, data contact and immediately inform the competent authority of any important change during your stay in the Bolivian territory.

Refresh your temporary applicant document within the set deadline and how many times it is needed.



Article 30. (AUTHORIZATION OF ENTRY). Local or border authorities who have knowledge

of requests from foreign persons to obtain refugee status, shall authorize their entry and shall refer the applicant to the Technical Secretariat of CONARE, respecting the principles of confidentiality and non-refoulement provided for in this Law.

Article 31. (MASSIVE INCOME). In case of massive income, or imminent risk of massive income to the country of

persons in need of international protection, CONARE will establish the necessary mechanisms to guarantee its protection and ensure a humanitarian, according to the various international instruments for the protection of refugees and human rights ratified by Bolivia.



Article 32. (APPLICATION).

I. The request for refuge will be presented in writing to the Technical Secretariat of CONARE within a period not

greater than ninety (90) calendar days, computable from its entry into Bolivian territory.

II. Exceptionally CONARE will evaluate and determine whether it is appropriate to process requests submitted outside the

deadline set.


I. Girls, children and adolescents unaccompanied or separated from their parents or guardians, may submit their application for

shelter for themselves, and CONARE must coordinate with the relevant entity for the protection of their rights and the appointment of a defender or guardian.

II. Once the application is submitted, any performance that will be performed without the presence of the guardian or defender will be null.

Article 34. (REGISTER). Once the application has been submitted, the Technical Secretariat shall register the applicant, his family and his dependents, in the database constituted for that purpose.

Article 35.-(DOCUMENTATION).

I. Concluded the registration, will be made delivery of a temporary document that allows both the applicant person, their group

family and dependents, to remain in regular situation in Bolivian territory until their petition is resolved.

II. The temporary document issued by CONARE will have a validity of sixty (60) days, extendable by the same


III. With the temporary document issued by CONARE, the applicant person may exercise their right to education,

health and work.



Article 36. (INTERVIEW). The initial interview will be carried out by CONARE's Technical Secretariat, the

which will have the object of identifying the main points of the request.

Article 37. (SUPPLEMENTARY INTERVIEW). Once the Technical Secretariat of CONARE has

sent the interview minutes and the Technical-Legal opinion of the request for shelter to the Executive Level of CONARE, it will determine if the case requires, a supplemental interview, to clarify specific points or extend the main points of the request.

Article 38. (LOAD OF THE TEST).

I. The test load corresponds to the requesting person.

II. The Technical Secretariat will be able to obtain relevant evidence for the purpose of analyzing the requests.


I. The Technical-Legal opinion of the Technical Secretariat shall not be binding and shall contain the assessment of the

compliance with the duties set out in paragraph I of Article 29 of this Law, as well as the adequacy

of the case to the terms of the Convention on the Status of Refugees and this Law.

II. Where no evidence of the request for a refuge in the file is tested, the opinion may be based in an additional manner on

the information available from the country of origin and the credibility of the applicant, in which case, if applicable, will apply the benefit of the doubt in your favor.

Article 40. (RESOLUTION).

I. Any resolution shall be issued by CONARE expressly, duly substantiated and signed by its

members and shall be notified to the requesting person, either in a personal capacity at the Technical Secretariat or in the registered office to effect.

II. This resolution will be binding in the competition area of CONARE.




I. The Impeachment Commission constitutes the competent instance to know and resolve the challenges of impeachment

emerging from decisions or resolutions in the first instance.

II. The Commission will be made up of other representatives of the Ministries that make up the Executive Level of the

CONARE, designated by the highest authorities of the institution that represent and must meet the same requirements established in Article 23 of this Law.

III. The members of the Commission may not in any case have a lower rank than the members of CONARE.

IV. The Presidency will be defined at the first meeting of the said Commission.

Article 42. (PROCEDURE).

I. If the application is denied in the first instance or the exclusion, cessation, cancellation, revocation or expulsion is determined,

this decision may be challenged with the necessary grounds, within the period of fifteen (15) working days,

, from your notification, to the Chair of the Impeachment Commission.

II. The challenge of the first instance decision or resolution will have suspensory effect.

III. The Impeachment Commission will issue a substantiated case resolution within a period of no more than fifteen (15) days

business, the same as once reported, does not support further resource in the administrative path.

Article 43. (CONFIRMATION). If the decision is confirmed by the resolution of the Impeachment Commission, it will

grant the foreign person a period of thirty (30) calendar days to leave the country or regularise their immigration status to through the Migration Directorate General.



Article 44. (ABANDONMENT). The CONARE will have the case file available when the person

applicant would not have renewed their temporary document within a period of greater than three (3) months from their last renewal, nor show their interest to obtain your refugee status.

Article 45. (DESISTAX). When the person requesting the

refugee status expressly desists from the

refugee status, CONARE will have the final file of the case available.





Article 46. (IMMIGRATION REGIME). Everyone recognized as a refugee has a stay

indefinite, and the competent authorities must extend the respective identity document that corresponds.

Article 47. The competent entity shall grant the refugee person, the document of

identity for the foreign person, which shall be valid for five (5) years and shall be renewable for the same period, considering their permanence undefined.

Article 48. (REQUIREMENTS). To access the identity document referred to in the preceding Article, the refugee person must submit a written application by attaching the documentation provided for in the Regulation of this Law.


I. When a refugee person expresses his intention to leave the country to a destination other than his or her country of origin,

must present a letter to the Presidency of CONARE, stating the reasons for his departure, the destination of his trip and the date of their return.

II. For the duration of their absence, the person shall maintain their refugee status, for the purposes of exercising the rights

recognized in this Law, provided that he has fulfilled the foregoing condition.

Article 50. (TRAVEL DOCUMENT).

I. The Migration Directorate General, with its budget, once it has the right technology and support,

should provide a travel document to refugees who do not carry their passport, which will allow them to leave and return to the country.

II. The period of validity and cost of the travel document will be equal to that of a National Passport. Your cost will be assumed

by the refugee person.





Article 51. (COORDINATION). The CONARE shall promote with the competent public and/or private entities,

the actions necessary for the fulfilment of the provisions laid down in Article 24 (l) and (n) of this Law.

Article 52. when a refugee person expresses his intention to acquire the

Bolivian nationality, CONARE will promote the necessary steps to the Ministry of Government in order to expedite and facilitate the process of naturalization.


ONLY. This Law will be regulated by Supreme Decree, at the proposal of the Ministry of Relations

Foreign, within ninety (90) calendar days, after its enactment.



I. Supreme Decree No 28329 of 1 September 2005 is repealed.

II. All provisions contrary to this Law are opened.

Remitase to the Executive Body for constitutional purposes

It is given in the Session Room of the Plurinational Legislative Assembly, six days of the month of June year

two thousand twelve.

Fdo. Lilly Gabriela Montano Viana, Rebeca Elvira Delgado Burgoa, Mary Medina Zabaleta, David Sanchez

Heredia, Wilson Chancaray T., Angel David Cortez Villegas.

Therefore, it is enacted to have and comply with the law of the State. Plurinational of Bolivia.

Palace of Government of the city of La Paz, twenty days of the month of June of the year two thousand twelve.

FDO. ALVARO GARCÍA LINERA, David Choquehuanca Cespedes, Juan Ramón Quintana Taborga, Carlos

Gustavo Romero Bonifaz, Cecilia Luisa Ayllon Quinteros.