Third Party Intervention Hasani v. Sweden, Application No. 35950/20, March 2022

Written submissions on behalf of the AIRE Centre (Advice on Individual Rights in Europe) and the European Council on Refugees and Exiles (ECRE).

Executive Summary

  1. Article 2 of the Convention obliges the Contracting States not only to refrain from the intentional and unlawful taking of life but also to take appropriate steps to safeguard the lives of those within their jurisdiction. The authorities of Contracting States have an operational duty to take reasonable steps to protect persons from threats to the right to life in all circumstances, including in cases of self-harm and suicide.
  2. An enhanced duty is owed to vulnerable individuals or where the authorities knew or ought to have known that there was a real and immediate risk to the life of an individual, in particular in the care of the state, including from self-harm, they were obliged to take reasonable measures within their power to avoid that risk.
  3. The interveners submit that in the migration context such reasonable measures could include ensuring that vulnerable persons concerned are provided with the necessary psychological and, where relevant, legal support when they are forced to be confronted with particularly traumatising news including concerning the outcomes of their asylum proceedings and potential removal.
  4. Where deficiencies of the Contracting States in taking such reasonable steps are systematically reported vis-a-vis a particular group of individuals, such as adolescents in the migration context or persons facing removal, it is the interveners’ opinion that in order to effectively discharge the obligations under Article 2, the Contracting States concerned should be invited to adopt and/or effectively comply with a legislative and administrative framework to deter against the loss of life in such context.
  5. The interveners further submit that the Contracting States remain bound by their obligations under EU and international law by virtue of Article 53 ECHR.
  6. EU law provides for clear mandatory time limits for asylum decisions, clear observance of special protective needs, clear prescriptive requirements for conveying negative decisions and information about appeals in light of the principle of effectiveness. A failure to comply with those clear protective provisions must be taken into account when assessing whether a State has taken all the steps it could reasonably have been expected to take to protect the life of a vulnerable young person within its jurisdiction.


Resource date: