All Articles: Asylum

News flash on Sri Lanka charter flight

It is Sri Lanka Charter Flight day again today. Just a quick one to say that the UK Border Agency has suddenly withdrawn parts of its new October 2012 Operational Guidance Note (link to old version) on Sri Lanka. Paragraphs 3.3.4 and 13.6 have been ...

23rd October 2012 By

Interesting fresh claim case

I’ve no time for a proper post at the moment but as a filler take a look at a few choice quotes from an interesting fresh claim judicial review concerning an Iranian convert to Christianity and her son, the case of R (on the application of SA (I ...

17th October 2012 By

UNHCR guidelines on survivors of male rape and sexual violence

UNHCR has published guidelines on Working with men and boy survivors of sexual and and gender based violence in forced displacement. The document is essential reading for anyone working with such men and boys and it is the first time I can recall seei ...

8th October 2012 By

Asylum credibility: timely new case from Strasbourg

In a case that in some ways exceptional but in many ways entirely ordinary, the UK Border Agency this week rejected an asylum claim by a young Afghan man. The reason the case was exceptional is that he had previously worked with the British armed forc ...

4th October 2012 By

Religious persecution

The Court of Justice of the European Union handed down judgment in the case of Germany v Y and Z [2012] EUECJ C-71/11 on 5 September 2012. This is one of the first Court of Justice cases to consider the definition of a refugee and the terms of Direct ...

27th September 2012 By

Freedom from Torture: A risk category in itself?

Human Rights Watch and a proxy terror front group -Freedom from Torture, clamored that the flights should be suspended because some ‘ethnic’ Tamils were subjected to cruel treatment in the island nation. This is what the Sri Lankan governm ...

17th September 2012 By

What is the magic number?

How many torture claims from returnees to Sri Lanka are necessary before the UKBA and the Courts decide that the time has come for review? This graph (click link to see further details) attempts to collate the data from recent reports and compare it ...

17th September 2012 By

Charter flight(s): materials in support of claims against removals

Below is a list of materials which can be used in connection/in support of  claims against decisions to remove on the charter flight(s) bound for Sri Lanka next week. The list will be updated as and when relevant materials are published and/or circul ...

15th September 2012 By

Stand-by group for charter flight cases

There are we understand two charter flights bound to Sri Lanka on the 19 and 20 September 2012. If detainees do not have solicitors then contact Janani Jananayagam from TAG [Tamils Against Genocide] who can be contacted on 07801 999130.  She will dir ...

14th September 2012 By

Significant step forward for young asylum seekers

The Court of Appeal’s judgement in KA (Afghanistan) & Ors v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2012] EWCA Civ 1014 makes it absolutely clear that the Secretary of State’s duty toward unaccompanied minors, in particular her duty to tr ...

24th August 2012 By

Miscarriage of Justice: Wrongly Convicted Asylum Seekers and Trafficked Persons

Recently the Law Society Gazette ran an article by Yewa Holiday, a barrister and a case review manager at the Criminal Cases Review Commission (CCRC), which highlighted the plight of asylum seekers and refugees wrongly convicted after being advised t ...

9th August 2012 By

The false omniscience of the internet age

In the case of HJ (Iran) [2011] 1 AC 596 (post here) the Supreme Court held that self oppression can be persecution. To put it another way, being forced to conceal a Convention reason protected characteristic (sexuality, political opinion, religious ...

2nd August 2012 By

Supreme Court says no lies to achieve safety

In the case of RT (Zimbabwe) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2012] UKSC 38 the Supreme Court has today held that asylum seekers cannot be expected to lie or dissemble in order to achieve safety in their own country. This principle appli ...

25th July 2012 By

Zimbabwe Country Guidance case overturned

In a follow up to my last post on Country Guidance cases generally and the Court of Appeal judgment in SG (Iraq) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2012] EWCA Civ 940, the existing Country Guidance case on Zimbawe, that of EM and Others (R ...

16th July 2012 By

Country Guidance cases reviewed

In the jurisprudential equivalent of Easyjet and Ryanair flights simultaneously arriving at Stansted from Alicante, Malaga AND Lanzarote, a number of important cases have just been deposited in the luggage carousel that is BAILII. School is now out an ...

16th July 2012 By

What is the “Legacy?”

Is it a bird, is it a plane or…is it in fact a policy?  Now the UKBA would vigorously deny this, they would deny that there is any kind of amnesty at all. However, the evidence would point to the contrary. Essentially prior to July 2011 if you had ...

19th June 2012 By

Refugees and refoulement: the Supreme Court

In the case of R (on the application of ST (Eritrea)) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2012] UKSC 12 the Supreme Court has held that it is not unlawful to seek to remove to another country a person who has already been recognised as a re ...

12th April 2012 By

Unethical and inaccurate: Border Agency to start x-raying children

The UK Border Agency will start x-raying children again from 29 March 2012 in order to determine their age. This practice is highly controversial. The letter announcing the resumption of this procedure can be found here. This brings to mind another ...

28th March 2012 By

Exceptional circumstances now more… exceptional

As expected, the obscure but important Chapter 53 of the Enforcement Instructions and Guidance (‘Extenuating Circumstances’) has been amended following on from the scrapping of paragraph 395C of the Immigration Rules. The new text is bas ...

2nd March 2012 By

Unattended children in Afghanistan

This is the week in which Human Rights Watch reported that ‘Children deported to Kabul will face horrible risks‘ and Amnesty International reported that at least 28 children had died in the IDP camps around Kabul as result of the freezing wint ...

29th February 2012 By

Tamil returnee claims torture in Sri Lanka

UPDATE: the order made by the Upper Tribunal is now available. A Tamil failed asylum seeker forcibly returned from the United Kingdom to Sri Lanka on 21 February 2012 has claimed that he was tortured on arrival. He was later interviewed by British off ...

27th February 2012 By

Zimbabwe gay guidance case

The latest Country Guidance case on Zimbabwe finds, in essence, that despite vociferous and violent pronouncements about homosexuality at the highest level in that country, Zimbabwe is a safe haven for lesbians and gays. The case is LZ (homosexuals) ...

31st January 2012 By

The asylum merry-go-round

Lord Justice Ward is at it again: This is another of those frustrating appeals which characterise – and, some may even think, disfigure – certain aspects of the work in the immigration field. Here we have one of those whirligig cases where an asyl ...

19th January 2012 By

NS v UK: removals under the Dublin II regulation

In the case of NS v UK (C-411/10) (see here for FM’s earlier alerter post), the Court of Justice of the European Union (CJEU) held that the transfer of an asylum-seeker from one EU Member State to another under the Dublin II regulation is no ...

11th January 2012 By

Tribunal obliged to seek out representation in Country Guidance cases

The Court of Appeal last week handed down a very interesting judgment on the need for ‘proper argument’ in Country Guidance cases, the obligation on the tribunal itself to seek to secure that proper argument and how far the tribunal deter ...

19th December 2011 By

New risk factor in Sri Lankan cases

The Swiss Federal Administrative Court has addressed risk to Sri Lankan Tamils facing enforced removal in a new judgment recently reported by UNHCR. The judgment is in French but the UNHCR summary in English states as follows: [P]olitical opponents, c ...

12th December 2011 By

Charter flight to Sri Lanka 15 December 2011

EDIT 14/12/11: Treasury Solicitor letter to High Court regarding charter flight can be found here. Question: Who said this? We will continue to investigate any credible and relevant allegations and review our policy in light of any findings. Answer:  ...

11th December 2011 By

Mapping Statelessness in the UK

After FM questioned his will to live following this analysis of the judgment in Sapkota v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2011] EWCA Civ 1320 I volunteered to have a read through the UNHCR and Asylum Aid joint study Mapping Stateless ...

8th December 2011 By

Iraq Country Guidance Overturned

The controversial Country Guideline case of HM and Others (Article 15(c)) Iraq CG [2010] UKUT 331 (IAC) has been quashed by the Court of Appeal. See the order here. The case of HM should no longer be followed as paragraph 2 of the order provides that ...

2nd December 2011 By

Yet more Tribunal decisions

After what felt like something of a hiatus early in the year, the tribunal has been churning out new reported cases in recent months as if there was no tomorrow. As far as I know no-one has suggested scrapping the Immigration and Asylum Chamber YET, a ...

4th October 2011 By

Giving torturers a voice: UK Border Agency country information

I have seen many country of origin information (COI) reports in my time, and I am generally a big fan of them, but the current UK Border Agency one on Sri Lanka is genuinely shocking. The COI unit at the Agency asked the British High Commission to mak ...

18th August 2011 By

Turf war’s genesis

Pierce Glynn and Stephen Knaffler QC have broadened the path (pun intended*) with SL and Westminster City Council (The Medical Foundation and Mind intervening) [2011] EWCA Civ 954. The case concerns a failed asylum seeker who, following a period as ...

16th August 2011 By

Dublin returns to Cyprus

R (on the application of Elayathamby) v Secretary of State for the Home Department [2011] EWHC 2182 (Admin) (11 August 2011) The case concerned a challenge to the removal of a mandate refugee to the Republic of Cyprus under the Dublin Regulations II. ...

11th August 2011 By

Critical report on UKBA use of country information

The Chief Inspector of UKBA, John Vine, two weeks ago released a new report on the use of country information by the UK Border Agency in asylum claims. I’ve been too busy to finish writing about it, unfortunately, and am still catching up on va ...

28th July 2011 By

UKBA to Libyans: PLEASE don’t claim asylum

The UK Border Agency can be very generous and understanding when it wants to be. For some reason, Libyans currently in the UK whose visas are running out are being told that they don’t need to meet the rules required for an extension, they don&# ...

22nd July 2011 By

More tribunal decisions

Another series of edictsreported cases has been handed down by the Upper Tribunal. Official headnotes and links to the BAILII judgments are included below. I’ve also thrown in another couple of cases that slipped out since the last big batch. We ...

18th July 2011 By

Batch of new tribunal decisions

The legal luggage carousel of the tribunal’s reporting committee has deposited a large batch of new cases in the arrivals hall of BAILII. Some of these cases are interesting, others perhaps a little less so. The more interesting include a couple ...

30th June 2011 By

Strasbourg allows Somali test case

The cases of Sufi and Elmi v UK (Applications nos. 8319/07 and 11449/07) have been allowed by the European Court of Human Rights. This is a major judgment on return to Somalia and the conditions there. The press release can be found here and the ...

28th June 2011 By

More on breach of asylum confidentiality

Further to Shivani’s last post on this, the numbers facing removal on the charter flight to Sri Lanka are lower than originally thought, although it still constitutes a mass removal. Evidence of other breaches of confidentiality in Sri Lankan ...

14th June 2011 By

Breach of confidentiality in Sri Lankan asylum return

An investigation is required as a matter of extreme urgency into an accepted breach of confidentiality in respect of the case of a Sri Lankan Tamil woman detained by the UKBA and pending removal to Sri Lanka on 16 June 2011. It is important to stress ...

10th June 2011 By

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