France: Administrative Court of Appeal of Nantes quashes Dublin transfer of Afghan national to Belgium

Friday, June 8, 2018

On 8 June 2018, the Administrative Court of Appeal of Nantes ruled in joined cases nos. 17NT03167 and 17NT03174, which concerned an Afghan national who lodged an asylum application in France after his previous asylum application in Belgium was rejected. The French authorities issued a take back request to Belgium under Article 18(d) of the Dublin III Regulation (DRIII), which was accepted. In September 2017, the Administrative Court of Nantes rejected the applicant’s appeal against his transfer to Belgium.

On a further appeal, the Administrative Court of Appeal of Nantes stated that the situation in Afghanistan can be considered as an internal armed conflict and that, based on numerous reports such as the Annual Report of the UN Assistance Mission in Afghanistan, the security and humanitarian situation in that country have deteriorated considerably in the past few years. Particularly in the province of origin of the applicant (Nangarhar), but also in Kabul, there is a situation of indiscriminate violence as a result of an armed conflict, which is capable of justifying the granting of subsidiary protection status.  

As it follows from the case in question that the applicant had received a definitive rejection of his asylum application in Belgium, and is subject to an order to leave the territory that could be immediately enforced, resulting in his removal to Afghanistan, the prefect of the Loire-Atlantique committed a manifest error in not applying Article 17 DRIII to examine the asylum application in France.

Based on an unofficial translation by the ELENA Weekly Legal Update. We would like to thank Flor Tercero, a lawyer in France, for bringing this case to our attention. In March 2018, the Administrative Court of Appeal of Lyon reached a similar decision with regard to the Dublin transfer of an Afghan asylum applicant to Finland (read more at the European Database of Asylum Law).

This item was reproduced with the permission of ECRE from the weekly ELENA legal update. The purpose of these updates is to inform asylum lawyers and legal organizations supporting asylum seekers and refugees of recent developments in the field of asylum law. Please note that the information provided is taken from publicly available information on the internet. Every reasonable effort is made to make the content accurate and up to date at the time each item is published but no responsibility for its accuracy and correctness, or for any consequences of relying on it, is assumed by ECRE. 



Dublin Transfer
Indiscriminate violence
Internal armed conflict
Request to take back
Subsidiary Protection