France - Administrative Tribunal, 29 July 2010, Mr.A., No 1013868/9-1

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The French authorities shall use the sovereignty clause in the Dublin Regulation, under the judge’s supervision, when the rules that determine responsibility of a member state for the asylum procedure may infringe on international and national rights guaranteed to refugees and applicants for asylum. In this case a transfer order to Hungary, where the applicant had on two occasions been detained in unsuitable conditions, was held to be an unlawful infringement of the applicant’s right to asylum.


The applicant left Afghanistan in 2008 and arrived in Hungary in January 2009, where he was detained in Gyor’s center. The applicant later entered Switzerland and was detained before being transferred back to Hungary in 2009. The applicant was detained in rough and unsuitable conditions in three different places. He also received death threats from other Muslims in the detention centers when he converted from Islam to Christianity.

The applicant left Hungary for France on May 2010 and applied for a temporary residence permit in order to apply for asylum. On 24 June 2010, the Prefect refused his application and issued a transfer order to Hungary. The applicant made an urgent appeal to the Administrative Court of Paris on 26 July 2010.

Decision & Reasoning: 

Art 53-1 of the French Constitution and Art 3(2) Dublin Regulation allow the authorities to examine an asylum application even if another member state is technically responsible for the examination. In particular, authorities shall use this possibility, under the judge’s supervision, when rules that determine responsibility of a member state may infringe on international and national rights guaranteed to refugees and applicants for asylum.

In this case, several detailed testimonies described the conditions the applicant was forced to accept during his two stays in detention centers in Hungary. The Administrative Court of Paris considered that, in this case, the Hungarian authorities did not provide the necessary safeguards to protect the applicant’s rights. As a consequence, the transfer order to Hungary on 24 June 2010 represents a serious and clearly unlawful infringement of the right to asylum.


The appeal was allowed.



This summary has been reproduced and adapted for inclusion in EDAL with the kind permission of Forum Réfugiés-Cosi, coordinator of Project HOME/2010/ERFX/CA/1721 "European network for technical cooperation on the application of the Dublin II regulation" which received the financial support of the European Refugee Fund.