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Migration and Home Affairs


The movement of a person going from a host country back to a country of origin, country of nationality or usual residence usually after spending a significant period of time in the host country whether voluntary or forced, assisted or spontaneous.


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  • BG: връщане
  • CS: návrat
  • DE: Rückkehr
  • EL: επιστροφή
  • EN: return
  • ES: retorno
  • ET: tagasipöördumine / tagasisaatmine
  • FI: paluu / palauttaminen
  • FR: retour
  • GA: filleadh
  • HR: povratak
  • HU: visszatérés
  • IT: ritorno / rimpatrio
  • LT: grąžinimas
  • LV: atgriešana (EU acquis); izraidīšana
  • MT: Ritorn / Tluq lura
  • NL: terugkeer
  • PL: powrót
  • PT: retorno
  • RO: returnare
  • SK: návrat
  • SL: vrnitev / vračanje
  • SV: återvändande
  • NO: retur
  • KA: დაბრუნება
  • UK: повернення
  • HY: վերադարձ


  • return migration

Narrower Term(s)

Related Term(s)


1. The International Organization for Migration (IOM) definition covers all categories of return of migrants: return within the territorial boundaries of a country, as in the case of returning IDPs and demobilised combatants; or from a host country (either transit or destination) to the country of origin, as in the case of persons who have resided legally in a country, migrant workers, refugees, asylum seekers and qualified nationals; or the way the return is implemented, e.g. voluntary, forced, assisted and spontaneous return. It does not cover stays shorter than three months (such as holiday visits or business meetings and other visits typically considered to be for a period of time of less than three months).
2. In the context of Council Directive 2008/115/EC (Return Directive), ‘return’ as defined in Art. 3(3), is understood as return which occurs once a return decision has been issued. This glossary uses the term ‘forced return’ to describe ‘return’ as defined in the Return Directive.