Citizen’s Right of Return Amid COVID-19 Pandemic: An Analytical Study in International and Jordanian legislations

Mr. Mohamed Hosni MA’Abreh
Lecturer at the Department of Public Law
Faculty of Law – Yarmouk University – Jordan – and researcher at the Institute of Comparative Law – Sorbonne University (Paris I) – France


This article discusses the Jordanian government’s decision to close the country border during (Covid-19) crisis, and accordingly prevent Jordanian citizens who want to return to their country from entering. The main aim of this paper is to analyze the compatibility of the government’s decision with the legal rules in the Jordanian legal system.
This study concluded that every Jordanian citizen has an absolute right – with no restriction, whether by normal or exceptional circumstances – to return to his home in accordance with the provisions of the Jordanian constitution and international treaties. As a result, this study concluded that the decision is unlawful and defective according to Jordan’s constitution and international conventions.
The importance of this research comes through clarifying the position of the Jordanian legal system regarding the right to return in light of the position of the Jordanian constitutional and administrative judiciary regarding it and by drawing on the position of jurisprudence and some Arab constitutions (such as the Egyptian, Kuwaiti, and Moroccan), so as to stand on defects of the Jordanian legal provisions regulating the right of the citizen to return to his/her country and come up with recommendations towards adjusting it in line with the global and regional trend for ensuring rights and freedoms and in according with international obligations.
This research concluded with a number of recommendations, the most important of which are: 1- The necessity of amending the government decision to allow citizens to enter their country, while subjecting them to certain conditions and procedures that guarantee the protection of public health, as France did, 2- The necessity of amending the Jordanian constitutional provision on the approach of the Arab Charter on Human Rights and the provisions of Egyptian and Kuwaiti constitutions to eliminate ambiguity and to guarantee the citizen right not to be exiled and to ensure the right to return to his country.

Keywords: citizen right of return and right of entry, the Arab Charter for Human Rights, deportation and exile, Jordanian defense law, states of emergency.

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