Austria / Highest Administrative Court / Ra 2017/19/0602 Syrian national vs. Austria

Key facts of the case 

A Syrian national entered the EU in Bulgaria and applied for asylum there on 18 November 2016. Following this, she applied for asylum again in Austria on 30 Dezember 2016. The Federal Asylum Authority consulted the Bulgarian authorities and thereafter rejected the application of the applicant on 15 May 2017 stating that according to the Dublin III regulation, Bulgaria is competent to decide on the application and that the removal to Bulgaria is permissable. The Federal Administrative Court found the appeal brought forward by the claimant to be unfounded. It further declared that the revision to the Highest Adminstrative Court was not permissible. The claimaint thereafter filed a claim to the Constituional Court, which refused to deal with the case, but transferred the case to the Highest Adminstrative Court. In this revision, the Syrian national claimed that her procedural rights were violated and hence requested to lift the decision on removal. According to the claim made in the revision, it is not clear whetherwould indeed not raise concerns with regards to Art. 3 ECHR when looking at the findings made by Federal Administrative Court in respect to the accommodation conditions of asylum seekers in Bulgaria and given that the applicant was pregnant at the time of the decision on the asylum application.

The key legal question raised by the Court

Is the removal of a pregnant asylum applicant to Bulgaria harmless in light of Art. 4 CFR and Art. 3 ECHR?

Outcome of the case

The Highest Administrative Court found that the Federal Administrative Court refered to outdated country information on Buglaria stemming from 2015 and 2016. Based on these findings, the Highest Administrative Court regarded it as not comprehensible that the Federal Adminsistrative Court concluded that the applicant would not face any risks according to Art. 4 CFR and Art. 3 ECHR. The judgement by the Highest Administrative Court would lack considerations abouth whether the then pregnant applicant would be suitably accommodated in Bulgaria without having to fear a violation of her rights guaranteed by Art. 4 CFR and Art. 3 ECHR.

Paragraphs referring to EU Charter: 

The Federal Administrative Court bases its decision, according to which the revision party would not risk a violation of her rights guaranteed by Art. 3 ECHR (Art. 4 CFR), mainly on findings that were made based on country reports on the situation in Bulgaria dating from 2015 and 2016, as they were also used by the Federal Administrative Court in the underlying proceedings to the judgments RA2017/18/0036 to 0041 on 30 August 2017 of the Highest Administrative Court.

9. As specified in the just mentioned judgement […] the legal conclusions by the Federal Adminstrative Court according to which a transfer of the revision party does not raise any concerns in respect to Art. ECHR (Art. 4 CFR) are not comprehensible given the facts found. The challenged decision lacks a more detailed analysis (taking into account recent reports), whether the applicant, who was pregnant at the time of the decision, would be accommodated and cared for in a manner after her removal to Bulgaria, that she would not face the risk of a violation of her rights guaranteed in Art. 3 ECHR (Art. 4 CFR). 

Paragraphs referring to EU Charter (original language): 

Das Bundesverwaltungsgericht stützte seine Entscheidung, wonach der Revisionswerberin eine Verletzung ihrer durch Art. 3 EMRK (Art. 4 GRC) garantierten Rechte nicht drohe, im Wesentlichen auf auf Länderberichten aus den Jahren 2015 und 2016 beruhenden Feststellungen zur Situation in Bulgarien, wie sie vom Bundesverwaltungsgericht auch in dem dem Erkenntnis des Verwaltungsgerichtshofes vom 30. August 2017, Ra 2017/18/0036 bis 0041, zugrundeliegenden Ausgangsverfahren getroffen wurden.

9. Wie in dem zuletzt genannten Erkenntnis […] näher dargestellt, ist auf der Grundlage dieser Sachverhaltsfeststellungen die rechtliche Schlussfolgerung des Verwaltungsgerichtes, wonach eine Überstellung der Revisionswerberin unter dem Blickwinkel des Art. 3 EMRK (Art. 4 GRC) keinen Bedenken begegne, nicht nachvollziehbar. Das angefochtene Erkenntnis lässt eine genauere, auf aktuellen Berichten beruhende Auseinandersetzung mit der Frage vermissen, ob die zum Zeitpunkt der Erlassung des angefochtenen Erkenntnisses schwangere Revisionswerberin bei Rückkehr nach Bulgarien in einer Art und Weise untergebracht und versorgt werden würde, dass ihr keine Verletzung ihrer durch Art. 3 EMRK (Art. 4 GRC) garantierten Rechte droht.

Language: 
German
Deciding body (original language): 
Verwaltungsgerichtshof
Language: 
German