Quality of the asylum procedure

As a result of the implementation of the EU-Turkey “deal” and successive legislative reforms to dismantle procedural safeguards and speed up returns of asylum-seekers to Turkey, an increasing number of individuals in need of international protection face an increasing risk of deportation. Among the detrimental reforms introduced in the past year are provisions restricting access to the appeal procedure.

RSA continues to offer legal support to asylum-seekers to challenge negative asylum decisions and deportation orders before national authorities and courts in all instances. It also represents asylum-seekers whose claim has been rejected on that basis before the European Court of Human Rights and other international Bodies.

RSA conducts legal analysis and advocacy on functioning and quality asylum procedures before national and international fora. Both individually and in collaboration with other civil society organisations, it actively contributes with analysis and recommendations to improving legislative reforms.

30 Jun: New issue Greek Asylum Case Law Report released

The new issue of the Greek Asylum Case Law Report released today provides excerpts from 79 decisions issued in the first half of 2022 by Administrative Courts, the Independent Appeals Committees and the Asylum Service.

24 Jun: Systemic breaches of the rule of law and of the EU asylum acquis at Greece’s borders brought before the European Parliament

six Greek civil society organisations, members of the Informal Forced Returns Recording Mechanism established by the Greek National Commission for Human Rights in response to systematic push back allegations in the country, submitted a briefing to the European Parliament Committee on Civil Liberties, Justice and Home Affairs (LIBE), covering systemic breaches of the rule of law and the EU acquis by Greek authorities.

09 Jun: Persisting systematic detention of asylum seekers in Greece

This note analyses current detention practice based on the latest available statistics on immigration detention and judicial review thereof, as well as on testimonies from refugees detained in Greece.

10 Mar: The greek asylum procedure in figures: most asylum seekers continue to qualify for international protection in 2021

This Refugee Support Aegean (RSA) policy note analyses the main trends and developments in the Greek asylum procedure through statistics provided by national authorities in response to parliamentary questions and in monthly reports of the Ministry of Migration and Asylum. It formulates observations and recommendations for filling existing gaps in the quality of data published by the administration.

27 Jan: Asylum and the rule of law: Serious concerns persist in Greece

In its submission to the 2022 Rule of Law Report of the European Commission, RSA highlights developments and persisting concerns relating to the rule of law through the lens of the Greek asylum system.

10 Jan: First Greek Asylum Case Law Report published by legal organisations

The first issue of the Greek Asylum Case Law Report published today is a joint initiative of the Greek Council for Refugees (GCR), HIAS Greece and Refugee Support Aegean (RSA), organisations providing legal support and representation to refugees and asylum seekers in Greece. The note compiles extracts of decisions of Administrative Courts, the Independent Appeals Committees and the Asylum Service in the area international protection selected from the casework of the above organisations.

08 Oct: Decision declaring Turkey a “safe third country” brought before Greek Council of State

Greek Council for Refugees (GCR) and Refugee Support Aegean (RSA) filed judicial review applications before the Greek Council of State for the annulment of the Joint Ministerial Decision of the Minister of Migration and Asylum and the Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs of 7 June 2021. The Decision designated Turkey as a safe third country for nationals of Syria, Afghanistan, Somalia, Pakistan and Bangladesh.

30 Aug: The Greek asylum in the first half of 2021: The asylum procedure in numbers

This note summarises and analyses key statistics on the functioning of the Greek asylum procedure during the first half of 2021, based on figures provided by the Ministry of Migration and Asylum in response to parliamentary questions.

26 Aug: Reject the unlawful Deportations Bill

The Deportations and Returns Bill tabled by the Greek Ministry of Migration and Asylum to Parliament on 25 August 2021 fully disregards the positions and concerns put forward by civil society and the National Commission for Human Rights (NCHR) regarding compliance with international and EU law on asylum and migration. Without any justification, the drafters of the bill omit over 60 comments tabled by experts in the public consultation, thereby circumventing a necessary institution to safeguard the rule of law and better law-making.

29 Jun: “Deportations and Returns Bill” – Comments from legal organisations

This paper summarises comments from legal organisations Refugee Support Aegean (RSA), the Greek Council for Refugees (GCR), HIAS Greece and the Danish Refugee Council (DRC) on the bill amending migration and asylum legislation,[1] submitted to public consultation by the Ministry of Migration and Asylum one year after the last migration reform. The organisations offer a detailed analysis of key provisions of the bill and of their impact on refugees and asylum seekers, as well as recommendations to achieve the necessary harmonisation of Greek legislation with EU law.

17 Jun: Europe turns Greece into a laboratory of anti-refugee policies

PRO ASYL and Refugee Support Aegean (RSA) warn that the right to asylum and the 1951 Refuge Convention are being largely suspended in Greece – with the active support of the European Union.

16 Jun: Asylum seekers in Greece lodge complaint on infringement of Asylum Directives

Three asylum seekers represented by Refugee Support Aegean (RSA) have lodged complaints with the European Commission relating to infringement of EU law stemming from Greece’s failure to correctly transpose and implement the Asylum Procedures Directive (2013/32/EU) and the Reception Conditions Directive (2013/33/EU).

15 Jun: The EASO Report on Turkey

RSA publishes the European Asylum Support Office (EASO) “Turkey: Content of Protection – Country Information Pack”, last updated in August 2019.

14 Jun: Greece deems Turkey “safe”, but refugees are not: The substantive examination of asylum applications is the only safe solution for refugees

our organisations stress that “externalization simply shifts asylum responsibilities elsewhere and evades international obligations”. We once again call on the Greek and European authorities to honour their responsibility to protect refugees and to avoid further undermining the European asylum acquis and the fundamental principles and values for protecting human rights. To this end, we call on Greece to revoke the JMD issued on 7 June.

22 Apr: New Pact on Migration and Asylum | Interpretation of provisions in Greek case law

Download the Note In September 2020, as part of the New Pact on Migration and Asylum, the European Commission tabled…

22 Mar: Beneficiaries of international protection in Greece | Access to documents and socio-economic rights

This Legal Note provides up-to-date information on the situation of beneficiaries of international protection in Greece, including readmitted status holders from other European countries, drawing on a third party intervention submitted on 24 February 2021 by Refugee Support Aegean (RSA) and Stiftung PRO ASYL in the case of Alaa Asaad v. the Netherlands before the European Court of Human Rights (ECtHR).

18 Mar: Stories of refugees | EU-Turkey “deal”: Five years of Shame

Three illustrative stories of refugees who experienced the tragic consequences of the implementation of the “deal” at any cost remind us that human rights are trampled every day in the Reception and Identification Centres of the Aegean islands.

16 Mar: Rule of law capture by a Statement | EU-Turkey deal: 5 Years of Shame

Download theLegal Note From its very inception in early March 2016, the EU-Turkey deal signed on 18 March 2016 was…

17 Oct: PRO ASYL/RSA: Last Exit Strasbourg – After the verdict of the highest administrative Greek court the legal dispute continues

The highest administrate Greek court, the Council of State confirmed in a judgment published on 22 September, the decisions of…