The Protocol relating to the Status of Refugees came into force in 1967. The 1951 United Nations Convention relating to the Status of Refugees restricted refugee status to those whose circumstances had come about “as a result of events occurring before 1 January 1951.” States who were party to the Convention had the option of interpreting this as “events occurring in Europe” or “events occurring in Europe or elsewhere.” The 1967 Protocol removed both temporal and geographic restrictions.
However, it also gave those States which had previously ratified the 1951 convention and chosen to use the geographically restricted definition the option to retain that restriction. States are required to provide information to the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees regarding the condition of refugees and implementation of the Protocol. They are also required to provide information on laws, regulations and decrees which relates to refugees.
States should inform the Secretary General about the laws and regulations they may adopt to ensure the application of the Protocol. Any State may make reservations or declarations relating to the Protocol and States may also denounce the Protocol.