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To Europe and Back Again: A Study of the Legality of Readmissions to Georgia

Boström, Henning LU (2015) LAGM01 20151
Department of Law
Abstract
This graduate thesis examines if readmitting asylum seekers from EU member states to Georgia without first thoroughly assessing their claims would be illegal on the grounds that it would expose them to a real risk of ill-treatment contrary to Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights. The basis of asylum law is protection based on individual grounds. This graduate thesis therefore studies risks of ill-treatment that would be real enough to render readmissions of all or certain groups of asylum seekers to Georgia contrary to Article 3. The main body of the graduate thesis consists of a study of Georgia’s treatment of asylum seekers and a study and application of Article 3 to Georgian circumstances. The study of Georgia’s... (More)
This graduate thesis examines if readmitting asylum seekers from EU member states to Georgia without first thoroughly assessing their claims would be illegal on the grounds that it would expose them to a real risk of ill-treatment contrary to Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights. The basis of asylum law is protection based on individual grounds. This graduate thesis therefore studies risks of ill-treatment that would be real enough to render readmissions of all or certain groups of asylum seekers to Georgia contrary to Article 3. The main body of the graduate thesis consists of a study of Georgia’s treatment of asylum seekers and a study and application of Article 3 to Georgian circumstances. The study of Georgia’s treatment of asylum seekers focuses on issues pertaining to the risk of indirect refoulement and the risk that readmitted asylum seekers would be subjected to inhuman or degrading living conditions when received in Georgia.

The conclusion is drawn that readmissions of asylum seekers from EU member states to Georgia would not give rise to a risk of indirect refoulement for anyone. This is based on the assessment that Georgia has the capacity to seriously examine asylum applications and on the fact that Georgia does not presently detain or deport rejected asylum seekers. The study does not examine how Georgian decision makers assess particular grounds for protection.

How Article 3 should be applied to inhuman or degrading living conditions is very uncertain. Legal scholarship is divided on how to interpret several aspects of the case law and it is clear that more case law is needed in order to decisively decide if living conditions in Georgia would make readmissions there illegal. However, it is concluded, with reservations, that the readmission of any asylum seeker to Georgia would probably be contrary to Article 3 on the grounds that the capacity of the Georgian reception system is severely insufficient to handle the amount of asylum seekers residing in Georgia. (Less)
Abstract (Swedish)
Examensarbetet besvarar frågan om överföringar av asylsökande till Georgien som ännu inte fått sina asylskäl utförligt utredda skulle utsätta dem för en verklig risk för omänsklig eller förnedrande behandling och därmed vara oförenliga med Europakonventionens artikel 3. Asylrätten bygger på bedömningar av individuella asylskäl. I examensarbetet studeras därför problem i Georgien som är generella nog att ge upphov till en risk för omänsklig eller förnedrande behandling för hela grupper av asylsökande eller asylsökande i gemen. Examensarbetets huvudtext består dels av en studie av den georgiska asylprocessen och flyktingmottagandet och dels av en studie, tolkning och tillämpning av Europakonventionens artikel 3 på förhållandena i Georgien.... (More)
Examensarbetet besvarar frågan om överföringar av asylsökande till Georgien som ännu inte fått sina asylskäl utförligt utredda skulle utsätta dem för en verklig risk för omänsklig eller förnedrande behandling och därmed vara oförenliga med Europakonventionens artikel 3. Asylrätten bygger på bedömningar av individuella asylskäl. I examensarbetet studeras därför problem i Georgien som är generella nog att ge upphov till en risk för omänsklig eller förnedrande behandling för hela grupper av asylsökande eller asylsökande i gemen. Examensarbetets huvudtext består dels av en studie av den georgiska asylprocessen och flyktingmottagandet och dels av en studie, tolkning och tillämpning av Europakonventionens artikel 3 på förhållandena i Georgien. Studien av Georgien rör i första hand risker för indirekt refoulement och omänskliga eller förnedrande levnadsvillkor.

Analysen av förhållandena i Georgien och artikel 3 ger att överföringar inte skulle kränka artikel 3 på den grund att de skulle ge upphov till en risk för indirekt refoulement. Det baseras på bedömningen att de generella bristerna i Georgiens asylprocess inte är allvarliga nog och att Georgien i nuläget inte förvarstar eller deporterar de som nekats asyl. Examensarbetet utreder inte hur georgiska beslutsfattare bedömer särskilda typer av asylskäl.

Det råder en osäkerhet kring hur artikel 3 ska tillämpas på levnadsvillkor. Osäkerheten gäller bland annat tillämpningen i länder utanför EU, beviskrav och vad som utgör levnadsvillkor. Doktrinen erbjuder olika tolkningar i dessa frågor och det behövs fler utlåtanden från Europadomstolen för att ett definitivt svar ska kunna ges på frågan om levnadsvillkoren för asylsökande i Georgien medför att överföringar kränker artikel 3. Med denna osäkerhet i åtanke dras den försiktiga slutsatsen att överföringar förmodligen skulle strida mot artikel 3 på grund av Georgiens mycket otillräckliga mottagningskapacitet och de svåra levnadsvillkor som detta kan väntas medföra för många av de som blir överförda. (Less)
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author
Boström, Henning LU
supervisor
organization
course
LAGM01 20151
year
type
H3 - Professional qualifications (4 Years - )
subject
keywords
Georgia, safe third country, readmission, European Convention on Human Rights, asylum law, human rights law, Public international law
language
English
additional info
henningbm@gmail.com
073-9605530
891207-0219
Datum för examensseminarium: 12 augusti 2015
id
7753943
date added to LUP
2015-08-25 13:18:20
date last changed
2015-08-25 13:18:20
@misc{7753943,
  abstract     = {This graduate thesis examines if readmitting asylum seekers from EU member states to Georgia without first thoroughly assessing their claims would be illegal on the grounds that it would expose them to a real risk of ill-treatment contrary to Article 3 of the European Convention on Human Rights. The basis of asylum law is protection based on individual grounds. This graduate thesis therefore studies risks of ill-treatment that would be real enough to render readmissions of all or certain groups of asylum seekers to Georgia contrary to Article 3. The main body of the graduate thesis consists of a study of Georgia’s treatment of asylum seekers and a study and application of Article 3 to Georgian circumstances. The study of Georgia’s treatment of asylum seekers focuses on issues pertaining to the risk of indirect refoulement and the risk that readmitted asylum seekers would be subjected to inhuman or degrading living conditions when received in Georgia. 

The conclusion is drawn that readmissions of asylum seekers from EU member states to Georgia would not give rise to a risk of indirect refoulement for anyone. This is based on the assessment that Georgia has the capacity to seriously examine asylum applications and on the fact that Georgia does not presently detain or deport rejected asylum seekers. The study does not examine how Georgian decision makers assess particular grounds for protection. 

How Article 3 should be applied to inhuman or degrading living conditions is very uncertain. Legal scholarship is divided on how to interpret several aspects of the case law and it is clear that more case law is needed in order to decisively decide if living conditions in Georgia would make readmissions there illegal. However, it is concluded, with reservations, that the readmission of any asylum seeker to Georgia would probably be contrary to Article 3 on the grounds that the capacity of the Georgian reception system is severely insufficient to handle the amount of asylum seekers residing in Georgia.},
  author       = {Boström, Henning},
  keyword      = {Georgia,safe third country,readmission,European Convention on Human Rights,asylum law,human rights law,Public international law},
  language     = {eng},
  note         = {Student Paper},
  title        = {To Europe and Back Again: A Study of the Legality of Readmissions to Georgia},
  year         = {2015},
}