What implications would the use of foreign embassies as asylum points entail?


In light of recently prolific cases (An individual sentenced to death on the basis of refusing to convert faith, as well as numerous "honor killings" that occur each year) and the waves of condemnation that they attract from across the western world (when they get media attention), I have been wondering what kinds of mechanisms could be put in play if such were desired.

In particular I have turned my attention to foreign embassies that exist in such countries and have mused about the possibility of them being treated as points where asylum might be claimed.

While an embassy would afford protections to its own citizens - what implications would extending such services to other nationals involve?

This regards any embassy - not specifically a US or EU embassy - and I am interested in hearing thoughts both against and in favor of such a possibility - should such exist.


Posted 2014-05-30T11:25:05.157

Reputation: 386



Many countries already allow people to claim asylum at their embassies. Fox news has a list of several. In fact, Julian Assange is still living in the Ecuadorian embassy in the UK.

It's worth noting that this is very country-specific, though. The United States does not allow it at their embassies.


Posted 2014-05-30T11:25:05.157

Reputation: 21 023

It is certainly interesting to hear that some embassies already do so. This is news - thanks. Are you aware of any current implications that this increased function to embassies is having? – Avestron – 2014-05-30T13:55:52.257

@Avestron - I'm not sure what you mean by "implications". It's not like this is a sudden development - it's been this way since at least the '50s, per the Fox article, and I doubt that was the first case. – Bobson – 2014-05-30T14:10:32.033

I guess I am referring to tension between the countries concerned, the possibility of invasion of embassy, and so on. If it is really not a new thing then I am guessing that the question is moot. – Avestron – 2014-05-30T15:13:32.780

@Avestron - Yeah, that'd fall under the header of "General international relations". If you're unhappy with what someone's embassy is doing, you're unhappy with the country. If you invade it, you're effectively declaring war on the other country (although not as dramatically as actually landing troops in their home country), etc. My guess is that it's as old as official embassies are. – Bobson – 2014-06-02T14:35:38.207