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CJEU Case C-233/18/ Opinion

Zubair Haqbin v Federaal agentschap voor de opvang van asielzoekers

Policy area:
Justice, freedom and security
Deciding Body type:
Court of Justice of the European Union
Type:
Opinion
Decision date:
06/06/2019

Introduction

  1. By its questions for a preliminary ruling, the arbeidshof te Brussel (Higher Labour Court, Brussels, Belgium) asks the Court to clarify the meaning of the provisions laid down in Article 20(4) of Directive 2013/33/EU, (2) in such a way as to determine whether and, if so, according to what procedures a Member State may exclude from material reception conditions an unaccompanied minor on the ground that he has committed a serious breach of the rules of the accommodation centre or has engaged in particularly violent behaviour.
  2. This reference for a preliminary ruling was made in the course of proceedings between Mr Zubair Haqbin, an unaccompanied minor of Afghan nationality, and the Federaal Agentschap voor de opvang van asielzoekers (Federal Agency for the Reception of Asylum Seekers, Belgium). (3) Owing to the seriousness of the violence committed by Mr Haqbin, Fedasil adopted a sanction in respect of him, entailing the temporary withdrawal from him of material reception conditions. That sanction meant not only exclusion from the reception centre but also from all related services.
  3. In line with the judgments of 27 September 2012, Cimade and GISTI, (4) and of 27 February 2014, Saciri and Others, (5) the Court is requested to clarify the rules governing the provision of support by the host Member State for an applicant for international protection (6) where the latter is an unaccompanied minor whose behaviour has put the staff and other residents of the reception centre in danger.

Conclusion

Having regard to the foregoing considerations, I propose that the Court answer the questions for a preliminary ruling referred by the arbeidshof te Brussel (Higher Labour Court, Brussels, Belgium) as follows:

In circumstances such as those at issue, where an unaccompanied minor has committed a particularly violent act giving rise to serious risks for respect for order and security within a reception centre, Article 20(4) of Directive 2013/33/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 26 June 2013 laying down standards for the reception of applicants for international protection must be interpreted as not precluding national legislation which allows the withdrawal of material reception conditions, provided that that decision is accompanied by the prior involvement of the assistance services and/or the judicial authorities responsible for child protection, in such a way as to ensure that that minor will receive ongoing support appropriate for the specific needs which his age, status and situation require.