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The contributions collected in text go beyond refugee law in its traditional sense - largely centred on questions of durable asylum and the plight of only a small tranche of the asylum-seeking population - in situating refugee law within the broader international legal system. The refugee problem is thus seen as a prism through which a host of exploding issues confront traditional international law and international relations: creation and dissolution of states, state responsibility, human rights, international jurisdiction and the United Nations mandate. These theoretical problems and their legal incidence on the refugee condition are debated against the background of UNHCR field operations in Former Yugoslavia, Africa and Eastern Europe. The contributions were originally presented at a Colloquium held in May 1994, organized by the Graduate Institute of International Studies in collaboration with the Office of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees.