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Ireland Europe condemns France for lack of assistance to asylum seekers

15:20  02 july  2020
15:20  02 july  2020 Source:   france24.com

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Data extracted on 15 June 2020. Planned article update: September 2020. Highlights. Tweet. First-time asylum applicants up 2 % in Q1 2020 compared with Q1 2019 and down 12 % compared with Q4 2019 . Tweet.

The European Court condemned the lack of a suspensive appeal in the “priority” procedure which allows asylum seekers to be returned to their countries of origin before their fears “It is high time for France to commit itself fully to making the principle of non-refoulement a reality in all circumstances.”

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France was condemned Thursday by the European Court of Human Rights for the "inhuman and degrading living conditions" of three asylum seekers, forced to live "on the street" and "deprived of means subsistence. "

It is the fourth time that France has been condemned by the European Court of Human Rights (ECHR) in less than a month. The international court condemned Paris on Thursday July 2 for the "inhuman and degrading conditions of life" of three asylum seekers, forced to live "on the street" and "deprived of means of subsistence".

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"The French authorities have failed (...) in their obligations" against the three isolated adults, Afghan, Russian and Iranian, aged 27, 33 and 46 and "victims of degrading treatment testifying to a lack of respect for their dignity, "said in a statement the court based in Strasbourg.

"They must be held responsible for the conditions in which the applicants found themselves for months, living on the street, without resources, without access to sanitation, having no means of meeting their basic needs and in the "permanent anxiety of being attacked and robbed," the court said.

"The applicants have been the victims of degrading treatment showing a lack of respect for their dignity", adds the court responsible for ensuring respect for human rights in the 47 countries of the Council of Europe.

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Typically, asylum seekers arriving in Europe through Italy might be apprehended there and make a request and then be released pending a decision, which can take months. If that person is temporarily detained for lack of valid residency documentation in another European country, such as France

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She also observed that the three men "lived on the street without financial resources", only receiving the Temporary Waiting Allowance (ATA) after very long delays.

Waiting periods for asylum requests

Furthermore, "before being able to register their asylum request, they were subjected" to deadlines during which they were unable to prove their status as applicants Asylum ".

For Strasbourg judges," this situation aroused in them feelings of fear, anguish or inferiority, which could lead to despair ".

The Court took great care, however, to" emphasize that it is aware of the continuous increase in the number of asylum seekers since 2007 and of the saturation "of reception structures.

It also recognizes" the efforts made by the French authorities to create additional accommodation places and for shorten the time taken to examine asylum requests ".

However, it considers that" these circumstances do not exclude that the situation of asylum seekers may have been such that it is likely to pose a problem "as to compliance by France with article 3 of the "European Convention on Human Rights (prohibition of inhuman and degrading treatment).

The Court therefore concluded "unanimously" that there had been a violation of this article and in particular said that France must pay 10,000 euros to two of the applicants and 12,000 euros to the third in respect of non-pecuniary damage.

With AFP

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