Italy – Trieste tribunal grants subsidiary protection to Somali national due to generalised violence in the country

Wednesday, September 5, 2018

On 5 September, the Immigration and Asylum chamber of the Trieste Tribunal grantedsubsidiary protection status to a Somali national, recognising the generalised violence in the country. The case concerned an asylum applicant from the Hiran region, in Somalia, who was a victim of kidnapping by the Al Shabaab terrorists, after an attack that killed his father and brother.

Upon his liberation by the government forces, the applicant fled to Europe, where he applied for asylum in Sweden and Norway, receiving negative decisions in both countries. Upon return to Italy, he applied for international protection and his claim was examined by the Territorial Commission of Gorizia who found that he lacked credibility. The Commission, however, decided to grant him humanitarian protection. The applicant appealed against this decision, requesting his recognition as a refugee.

In divergence with the Commission, the Tribunal found that the applicant’s arguments were presented in such detail, that there was no room for doubts as to his region of origin. Notably, despite the fact that he did not present documents to support his claim and the presence of inconsistencies regarding the reasons that led to the departure from Somalia, the applicant’s narrative was accepted as credible. The judges, however, concurred with the asylum authorities that the conditions for refugee status were not met.

The Tribunal went on to examine the security situation in Somalia, in order to decide on the subsidiary protection claim. It cited EASO’s most recent report on the general security situation in Somalia, and concluded that the ongoing conflict between government forces and terrorist and militia groups indicates that the State cannot guarantee effective control of the territory. In respect of the situation in Hiran, the high number of parties to the conflict creates a situation that justifies the need for subsidiary protection for the applicant. The Commission’s decision was overturned, and the applicant was recognised as a beneficiary of subsidiary protection.

Based on an unofficial translation by the ELENA Weekly Legal Update. Many thanks to Sofia Bonatti, Legal Officer at ECRE, for her contribution to the judgment’s translation and summary.

This item was reproduced with the permission of ECRE from the weekly ELENA legal update. The purpose of these updates is to inform asylum lawyers and legal organizations supporting asylum seekers and refugees of recent developments in the field of asylum law. Please note that the information provided is taken from publicly available information on the internet. Every reasonable effort is made to make the content accurate and up to date at the time each item is published but no responsibility for its accuracy and correctness, or for any consequences of relying on it, is assumed by ECRE.




Credibility assessment
Standard of proof
Subsidiary Protection