Concept of Asylum

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Introduction

Someone may ask for a political asylum when they are frightened to live in their own country. They will then go to another country. If they are allowed to live in the new country this is called political asylum.

The political asylum is one of the human rights affirmed by Article 14 of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and a rules of international human rights law. All countries who have agreed to the United Nations Conventions Relating to the Status of Refugees must let people, who do qualify, come into their country.

People who qualify for asylum are those who can show that they might be badly treated in their own country because of their:

• Race,
• Nationality,
• Religion,
• Political opinions or
• Membership of a particular social group or social activities. People often confuse exiling an individual from his/her home country as a migration to a political asylum but that is not as it seems, migrating with one's own will due to personal reasons can be a political migration but not under the sentence of Government. People who are given political asylum are called refugees. They are often confused with "economic refugees". Economic refugees are people who move from a poor country to a richer one so that they may work and make more money, often to send back to their families. Economic refugees are often an easy target for some politicians and newspapers who say that economic refugees take jobs from people who live in the host country. These politicians and newspapers do not show that there is a difference between economic refugees, who want live in another country to make money, and political refugees who must live in another country to be safer.

Ancient Greece

In ancient Greece the temples, altars, sacred groves, and statues of the gods generally possessed the privileges of protecting slaves, debtors, and criminals, who fled to them for refuge. The laws, however, do not appear to have recognized the right of all such sacred places to afford the protection which was claimed, but to have confined it to a certain number of temples, or altars, which were considered in a more especial manner to have the asylia.

There were several places in Athens which possessed this privilege, of which the best known was the Theseum, or temple of Theseus, in the city, which was chiefly intended for the protection of the ill-treated slaves, who could take refuge in this place, and compel their masters to sell them to some other person.

The other places in Athens which possessed the jus asyli were: the Altar of Pity, in the agora, the altar of Zeus Ayopcuos, the Altar of the Twelve Gods, the altar of the Eumenides on the Areopagus, the Theseum in the Piraeus, and the altar of Artemis, at Munichia. Among the most celebrated places of asylum in other parts of Greece, we may mention the temple of Poseidon, in Laconia, on Mount Taenarus ; the temple of Poseidon, in Calauria ; and the temple of Athena Alea, in Tegea 

It would appear, however, that all sacred places were supposed to protect an individual to a certain extent, even if their right to do so was not recognised by the laws of the state, in which they were situated. In such cases, however, as the law gave no protection, it seems to have been considered lawful to use any means in order to compel the individuals who had taken refuge to leave the sanctuary, except dragging them out by personal violence. Thus it was not uncommon to force a person from an altar or a statue of a god, by the application of fire. Incidents of violation of asylum include the deaths of Cylon of Athens and Pausanias of Sparta.

In the time of Tiberius, the number of places possessing the jus asyli in the Greek cities in Greece and Asia Minor became so numerous, as seriously to impede the administration of justice. In consequence of this, the senate, by the command of the emperor, limited the jus asyli to a few cities, but did not entirely abolish...
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