Worldwide, immigration-related detention has become an established policy apparatus based on dedicated facilities and burgeoning institutional bureaucracies. Though international law states that the use of detention should be the exception and not the norm, the detention of migrants has become routine, rather than an exceptional response to the irregular entry or stay of asylum-seekers and migrants, in a number of countries around the world. The detention of foreigners is closely associated with two policy concerns of the countries involved: first, the treatment of asylum-seekers who have been rejected either after full consideration of their applications or on formal grounds; second, the treatment of foreigners staying irregularly in the territory of those countries. Should due process not be followed and if detention conditions do not meet international standards, then detention becomes arbitrary. Thousands of persons are subjected to arbitrary detention each year.
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