UN High Commissioner for Refugees

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Dear Delegates,

My name is Illan, and I am a sophomore at Harvard College planning on pursuing a joint concentration in Mathematics and Philosophy, with the intention of going into investment banking after college. I grew up surrounded by diversity in downtown Toronto, sparking my interest in the intersection and cooperation of different cultures. This led me to join my high school’s Model United Nations team and become the team’s head delegate. In my free time, I enjoy running and reading about contemporary ethical dilemmas.

While working as an Assistant Director in the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees at HNMUN last year, I discovered how rewarding it is to chair the committees that I enjoyed so much in high school. I chose to remain in the UNHCR because I believe the current refugee crises around the world, such as the ongoing ones in Myanmar and Northern Africa, are among the most pressing problems in the world today. I am extremely excited to discuss all of the dimensions of these crises at conference.


Illan RM Freudmann
Director, United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees

Topic Area: Asylum and the Right to Healthcare

At face value, the belief that everyone should have a right to healthcare is not particularly divisive. In countries with massive inflows of refugees however, the answer stops being so straightforward. Asylum seekers, who have often been forced to endure extremely hard circumstances to arrive at their asylum country, pose a significant financial burden on public healthcare systems such as those in the European Union. While providing refugees with healthcare might be opposed from a purely economic perspective, nations must also ask themselves whether they have a moral obligation to help these large groups of people with nowhere else to go. In this committee, delegates will be challenged to decide just how much needs to be provided for refugees, and how to optimize the standard of living for everyone in the country that they represent, including asylum seekers.