Social & Economic rights

Thursday, 4 May 2017

Report: How European Countries Can Stop People without Nationality Being Locked up in Limbo

A report published today by the European Network on Statelessness (ENS) on the use of immigration detention warns that stateless people are often detained for months and even years, without any real prospect of their cases being resolved. This is because immigration systems do not have appropriate procedures in place to identify those who are left without nationality and to protect stateless people.

The report calls on European governments to reform their immigration and detention systems to comply with their international human rights obligations and end the arbitrary detention of stateless people. States need to put in place procedures to identify people without nationality so that they don’t end up locked up in limbo.

Chris Nash, Director of the European Network on Statelessness said:

“Across Europe a failure by states to put in place effective systems to identify stateless people leaves them exposed to repeated and prolonged detention. These men, women and children fall between the cracks, because no country will recognise them as nationals. This is preventable, and today we are publishing a clear agenda for change which will help end this travesty.”

Angela Li Rosi, Deputy Director of UNHCR Bureau for Europe said:

“Stateless persons across Europe risk serious violations of their right to liberty and security of person. They can face repeated and prolonged detention not because they committed a crime but because they are not allowed to stay in the country. They are told they don’t belong anywhere. Their children are invisible, their families do not exist. UNHCR will continue to work with ENS to support States in ending this human suffering in Europe.”

A statement signed by civil society organisations and leading lawyers and academics from over 30 European countries will be sent to governments highlighting that consensus is building in Europe that the current use of immigration detention is unsustainable, harmful, and, in many cases, unlawful.

Download the report here.

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Praxis means action
Praxis means action
Praxis means action
Praxis means action
Praxis means action