The Applicant is a Pakistani national who sought asylum in France in August 2009 alleging persecution on the basis of his conversion to the Ahmadiyya religion. Specifically, he claims he was abducted, detained and tortured for several days before escaping. He left Pakistan allegedly to flee an arrest warrant against him for preaching. The French authorities rejected his asylum application twice, and the national asylum court dismissed his appeal twice, each time on the ground that his statements were insufficiently substantiated.
The Applicant, an Iranian national, was a militant journalist in Iran who fled after being arrested and tortured for anti-establishment protests. Arriving in Greece via Turkey, his asylum claim was dismissed and he was detained pending deportation to Turkey in a police station and various detention centres. He filed objections to his detention conditions, alleging lack of hygiene and overcrowding, but these were rejected. He initiated an appeal against the asylum refusal while in detention, and was then released due to the expiration of the maximum detention time period under Greek law.
The Applicants were all asylum seekers in 2009 in Greece who were detained pending removal to their countries of origin, from which they fled for political reasons on unknown dates. They lodged objections to the Greek authorities concerning the conditions of their months of detention at Venna detention centre, due to a lack of hygiene, insufficient living space and no access to outdoor exercise. Except for one, who obtained refugee status, the rest were either deported to their countries of origin or to Turkey, or released in 2010.
These three cases are about the proposed deportation of three Sunni Muslim Iraqi nationals from Sweden back to Iraq, on account of their asylum claims having been rejected in 2010, three years after their arrival. B.K.A., a member of the Ba’ath party, worked as a professional soldier for over a year for the regime of Saddam Hussein. He was also involved in a blood feud after unintentionally killing a relative. T.A. worked for security companies in Baghdad who co-operated with the US military, and alleged that his house was completely destroyed by Shi’ite militias. T.K.H.
On 9 December 2013, the Grand Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights refused to hear Malta’s appeal against two judgments of 23 July 2013. In both judgments, the ECtHR held that Malta’s immigration detention conditions and lack of adequate review of detention violate Articles 3 (prohibition of degrading treatment), 5(1) (right to liberty) and 5(4) (right to have lawfulness of detention decided speedily by a court) of the Convention.
The case concerns three former Applicants for asylum who, in the course of their applications, sought to obtain access to an official document drafted by the immigration authority containing internal legal advice on whether to grant residence status. The issue is whether the legal analysis contained in the document constitutes ‘personal data’ within the meaning of Article 2(a) of the Privacy Directive, and whether the Applicants accordingly have a right to access the document under Article 12 of that Directive and Article 8(2) of the EU Charter.
A reference for a preliminary ruling concerning Article 7(4) of the Returns Directive was published by the CJEU on 13 December 2013. It was lodged on 28 October by the Raad van State (Netherlands) and the questions read as follows:
21 December 2013 is the deadline for the transposition of Directive 2011/95/EUon standards for the qualification of third-country nationals or stateless persons as beneficiaries of international protection, for a uniform status for refugees or for persons eligible for subsidiary protection, and for the content of the protection granted (recast).
The EU and Turkey have signed a Readmission agreement in exchange for opening talks on visa liberalisation for Turkish citizens travelling to Europe. For the latter, the European Commission has published ‘A roadmap towards a visa-free regime with Turkey’ which lists the requirements which should be fulfilled by Turkey, including managing borders in a manner that effectively prevents irregular migration to Europe.