Magazine article European Social Policy

Asylum : Report Highlights Shortcomings and Divergences in Procedures

Magazine article European Social Policy

Asylum : Report Highlights Shortcomings and Divergences in Procedures

Article excerpt

The main shortcomings identified by the European Commission with regard to the application of Directive 2005/85/EC on minimum standards on procedures for granting and withdrawing refugee status are: poor implementation, a vagueness of standards leading to administrative errors and procedural guarantees to refugees, which vary considerably from one country to another. In a report, presented on 8 September on this subject, the Commission recalls that, on 21 October 2009, it presented a proposal to recast the directive in order to remedy these deficiencies.

The Asylum Procedures Directive was designed to establish minimum standards for fair and efficient procedures. But the report on its implementation highlights that the objective of creating a level playing field with respect to asylum procedures has not been fully achieved. Some of the directive's optional provisions and derogation clauses have contributed to the proliferation of divergent arrangements across the EU. This is notably the case with respect to the provisions on accelerated procedures, safe country of origin', safe third country', personal interviews, legal assistance and access to an effective remedy.

A number of cases of incomplete and/or incorrect transposition and flaws in the implementation of the directive have also been identified. The deadline for transposition of most of the directive was 1 December 2007, while Article 15, which concerns legal assistance, had to be transposed by 1 December 2008. …

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