The Netherlands: Tunisia cannot be considered a Safe Country of Origin

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

On 29 March 2017, the Regional Court of The Hague has judged that the Secretary of State of Security and Justice did not sufficiently justify why Tunisia is to be regarded as a safe country of origin. The applicant, a Tunisian national, applied for asylum in the Netherlands, fearing to be killed by the family of the man who was killed by the applicant’s brother. According to the Secretary of State, Tunisia is a safe country of origin, thereby referring to the letter of the Minister of Security and Justice to the President of the Second Chamber of 11 October 2016 on the national list of safe countries of origin.
However, according to the Regional Court of the Hague, the Secretary of State has not shown that there is generally and consistently no persecution or treatment contrary to Article 3 of the Convention in Tunisia. Moreover, the Secretary of State has not investigated sufficiently whether there is an effective system of available remedies against human rights violations in Tunisia. The Court therefore sees reason to declare the ministerial decree of 11 October 2016 non-binding so far as Tunisia is considered as a safe country of origin. Nevertheless, the Court finds that the Secretary of State was right declaring the asylum application not credible, and rejects the asylum application on this ground.
Based on an unofficial translation by the ELENA Weekly Legal Update.


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Effective remedy (right to)
Inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment
Safe country of origin