France - Council of State, 15 May 2009, Miss K., n°292564

Country of Decision:
Country of Applicant:
Date of Decision:
15-05-2009
Citation:
CE, 15 mai 2009, Mlle K., n° 292564
Additional Citation:
Conseil d’Etat, 15 mai 2009, Mlle K., n° 292564
Court Name:
Council of State/Conseil d’Etat
National / Other Legislative Provisions:
France - Ceseda (Code of the Entry and Stay of Foreigners and Asylum Law) - Art L.712-1
France - Ceseda (Code of the Entry and Stay of Foreigners and Asylum Law) - Art L.712-3
France - Ceseda (Code of the Entry and Stay of Foreigners and Asylum Law) - Art L.713-2
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Headnote: 

As soon as one persecution ground (in this case religion) exists and the other conditions for qualifying for refugee status are fulfilled, refugee status must be recognised rather than subsidiary protection, including in a context of generalised violence. 

Facts: 

The applicant, a single woman from Iraq, was a member of the Assyrian-Chaldean community, a Christian, and had lived in Bagdad. From 1997, she and her family, faced many problems and threats. Some of her family members were recognised as refugees in France. 

The French Office for the Protection of Refugees and Stateless Persons (Ofpra) rejected her application for refugee status but granted her subsidiary protection. She challenged this negative decision before the Commission des Recours des Réfugiés (Refugee Appeals Commission) (CRR) (in a plenary session) which refused to recognise her refugee status and confirmed the grant of subsidiary protection by the Ofpra.

The applicant challenged this decision before the Council of State as she considered that she should be granted refugee status because the reasons for her flight from Iraq was linked to one of the persecution grounds of the 1951 Refugee Convention.
 

Decision & Reasoning: 

The Council of State considered that the CRR/CNDA had sovereign power to determine that generalised violence prevailed in Iraq and that the Court could take into account all the elements which characterise the situation of the applicant in order to grant her subsidiary protection.

However the Council of State considered that the CRR/CNDA did not apply the legal consequences of its own findings and made a legal error by refusing to grant refugee status to the applicant. The CRR/CNDA had itself mentioned, that the threats the applicant might be subject to were linked to her membership of the Assyrian-Chaldean community, without stating in which way the other conditions for qualifying for refugee status were not fulfilled.

The Council of State considered that the applicant had grounds for claiming that the CRR/CNDA decision denying her refugee status should be quashed. 

Outcome: 

The CRR/CNDA decision was quashed. The case was referred to the CNDA.
 

Subsequent Proceedings : 

In a decision made on 14 April 2010 (CNDA, 14 avril 2010, Mlle K., n° 02021434/419162, the CNDA granted refugee status to the applicant.

Observations/Comments: 

The CNDA (National Asylum Court) was called CRR (“Commission des recours des réfugiés”) until the Act n°2007-1631 of 20 November 2007.