Sweden - Migration Court of Appeal, 28 October 2008, UM 2397-08

Country of Decision:
Country of Applicant:
Date of Decision:
28-10-2008
Citation:
UM 2397-08
Additional Citation:
MIG 2008:42
Court Name:
Migration Court of Appeal
Printer-friendly versionPrinter-friendly version
Headnote: 

The conditions for asylum seekers in Greece were at the time of the decision not of such a character that it would prevent transferring asylum seekers according to the Dublin Regulation.

Facts: 

The applicant travelled from Iraq to Greece. He stated that he returned immediately to Iraq and remained there for three months. This would make Sweden responsible for his asylum application instead of Greece. The applicant also claimed that the conditions for asylum seekers in Greece were unacceptable and that he was at risk of being returned to Iraq.

The Migration Board denied the application, stating that it could not be established that Greece did not bear the responsibility for the asylum application following Article 16.3 of the Dublin Regulation. The Migration Board also stated that it was clear from the COI that the applicant would have access to an adequate asylum procedure in Greece and that there were no reasons to presume that he would be sent to a country in which he would risk persecution.

The Stockholm Migration Court concurred and denied the appeal on 16 April 2008. When appealing the judgment to the Migration Court of Appeal, the appicant also claimed humanitarian reasons and the poor conditions in Greece for asylum seekers.

Decision & Reasoning: 

The Migration Court of Appeal, referring to its own case law, stated that there had to be compelling humanitarian reasons for not applying the Dublin Regulation (MIG 2007:8 and MIG 2007:32). A Member State, supported by the exceptions outlined in Article 3.2, can derogate from applying the regulation if another member state violates the principle of non-refoulement and thus cannot be considered a safe country. In its reasoning the Court referred to Article 21 of the Qualification Directive. 

The Migration Court of Appeal also concluded that all EU Member States must be presumed to have both the intention and the ability to adhere to EU decisions, and that criticism against a member State first and foremost must be dealt with by EU institutions. The Court also established that Sweden’s obligations according to the ECHR would mean an obstacle for executing decisions based on the Dublin Regulation if the principle of non-refoulement was in danger of being breached (the Court here referred to T.I. v. UK). The Migration Board and the Migration Courts thus have to ensure that no such breach of obligations is possible.

In its assessment of whether a transfer to Greece was possible in the present case the Court referred both to the considerable amount of COI included in the case, as well as judgments from the ECJ (cases C-72/06 and C-130/08) where the ECJ had discussed the asylum procedure in Greece. Based on this material the Migration Court of Appeal concluded that transferring the applicant from Sweden to Greece according to the Dublin regulation would not constitute a breach of Sweden’s obligations according to the ECHR. Neither were there humanitarian concerns that motivated the Dublin regulation not to be applied.  

Outcome: 

The Migration Court of Appeal denied the appeal.

Case Law Cited: 

CJEU - C-130/08 Commission v Greece

CJEU - C-72/06 Commission v Greece

Sweden - MIG 2007:32

Sweden - MIG 2007:8