Archives For Asylum

Chelvan

In an e-mail posting on a practitioners’ discussion group last week, a representative asked the group for details of a psychiatrist in order to prove that the detained client is gay. In follow-up e-mails, it was revealed that the enquiry was prompted by Counsel’s advice, and that the author meant no offence. Luckily for the author of the enquiry, the Court of Justice of the European Union last Thursday published the Opinion of Advocate General Sharpston in the Cases of A, B and C , which relate to how an asylum seeker could establish that they are gay, or more importantly, what level of investigation would violate their human rights? Continue Reading…

Asylum Aid

Asylum Aid has published a new report, Even If… The use of the Internal Protection Alternative in asylum decisions in the UK, analysing the reasoning on internal protection or internal relocation in Home Office asylum decisions, identifying a number of failings appearing frequently in the decisions read for the research. To lawyers practising in asylum, the flaws in reasoning will be familiar, but it is useful to have this detailed analysis of patterns emerging from thematic analysis of a number of refusal letters. Continue Reading…

Gaddafi mural with bullet holes by mojomogwai, on Flickr

Nearly 3 years after the end of the civil war in Libya that swept away the Qadhafi regime and its associated country guidance, and after nearly 8 months of deliberation, the Upper Tribunal has decided that Libya isn’t so bad after all, at least for men. The determination of AT and Others (Article 15c; risk categories) (CG) [2014] UKUT 318 (IAC) runs to 261 paragraphs plus 8 appendices, and the tribunal is to be commended for its lucid treatment of a huge amount of evidence, delay (and some conclusions) notwithstanding. The hearing itself was notable for taking live videolink evidence from a country expert in New York City. Continue Reading…

By Metaforica (Own work) [CC-BY-SA-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

In MF (Albania) v SSHD [2014] EWCA Civ 902, the Court of Appeal considered and upheld the criticisms of the appellant’s country expert made by the Upper Tribunal. In doing so, the Court appeared to disapprove of the practice of instructing expert witnesses to comment on particular findings made by decision-makers in reasons for refusal letters. Continue Reading…

Razor Wire by Derek Bridges

HM Chief Inspector of Prisons report on an unannounced inspection of Dover Immigration Removal Centre (IRC) between 3–14 March 2014 (published 7 July 2014) once again highlights critical concerns surrounding Rule 35 of the Detention Centre Rules 2001.

Dover IRC is generally commended, although its atmosphere appears to remain that of a prison rather than an immigration detention centre – the distinction may be a fine one.  Continue Reading…

Effects of immigration detention

Yesterday I gave a short talk at an event organised by the Campaign to Close Campsfield as part of Oxford Refugee Week. It was an excellent, well attended event in a packed room at the town hall and I’m grateful for the chance to have spoken.

My first demonstration was as a student in 1998 at Campsfield. Like the migrants detained there, my first ever experience of immigration law and practice in the UK and our horrendous treatment of refugees was at an inhuman, miserable, isolated detention centre. I could not see the detainees to allow me to humanise them. They could not see me to be welcomed. Continue Reading…

Molly Malone

Judgment has finally been handed down in the latest test case on Dublin removals to Italy, Tabrizagh and others v SSHD [2014] EWHC 1914 (Admin) and although it is on any view bad news, there is much in it to consider. In a carefully reasoned and frankly impressive decision the newly made up Laing J dismissed the claimants’ challenge on the facts. This is the first Dublin case to consider the principles in the Supreme Court’s ground-breaking EM (Eritrea) v SSHD [2014] UKSC 12. Continue Reading…

Razor Wire by Derek Bridges

Born just before the revolution in 1978, a man known only as DA grew up an orphan in Iran. He understood that his father had been tortured for his political beliefs and he was raised by his older siblings. When the time came for his compulsory military service, he was allocated to a unit responsible for prison security. The prisoners he guarded were kept in squalid conditions and tortured before being executed. Some executions were by stoning: being buried to chest height then stoned from only a few feet away.

What DA witnessed made him sick. Continue Reading…