31. Januar 2018 · Kommentare deaktiviert für „Belgium: Returns to Sudan violated principles of non-refoulement“ · Kategorien: andere Länder, Sudan · Tags:

Amnesty International | 30.01.2018

This public statement illustrates how recent returns to Sudan by Belgian authorities appear to have been realized in breach of international law, and in particular of the principle of non-refoulement on both substantive and procedural grounds.

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In September 2017, Belgian authorities in Brussels detained 99 Sudanese nationals, whom they believed to be irregularly present in the country. When authorities initiated proceedings for their repatriation, they invited Sudanese state officials to interview over 60 detained migrants and confirm their nationality. The Sudanese authorities issued 43 laissez-passer travel documents. Between October 2017 and December 2017, Belgium returned the first 10 Sudanese people to Khartoum.

According to testimonies from some of those returned to Sudan, as collected by the Tahrir Institute for Middle East Policy, reported in December 2017, returnees were ill-treated by Sudanese officials upon arrival in Khartoum. In response to these allegations, the Belgian government suspended further returns to Sudan and requested Belgium’s Commissioner General for Refugees and Stateless Persons to conduct an inquiry into the allegations, which is currently ongoing.

On the basis of available evidence, recent returns to Sudan appear to have been realized in breach of international law, and in particular of the principle of non-refoulement on both substantive and procedural grounds. Current inquiries into the lawfulness of the returns constitute a welcome development to ensure accountability, which should be followed by adequate reforms to guarantee that return procedures are brought in line with Belgium’s international obligations.

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