Article 19 - Protection in the event of removal, expulsion or extradition
1) The case originated in an application (no. 27765/09) against the Italian Republic lodged with the Court under Article 34 of the Convention for the Protection of Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms (“the Convention”) by eleven Somali nationals and thirteen Eritrean nationals (“the applicants”), whose names and dates of birth are shown on the list appended to this judgment, on 26 May 2009.
3) The applicants alleged, in particular, that their transfer to Libya by the Italian authorities had violated Article 3 of the Convention and Article 4 of Protocol No. 4. They also complained of the lack of a remedy satisfying the requirements of Article 13 of the Convention, which would have enabled them to have the above-mentioned complaints examined.
For these reasons, the Court
(a) that the respondent State is to pay the applicants, within three months, the following amounts:
(i) EUR 15,000 (fifteen thousand euros) each, plus any tax that may be chargeable, in respect of non-pecuniary damage, which sums are to be held by the representatives in trust for the applicants;
(ii) EUR 1,575.74 (one thousand five hundred and seventy-five euros seventy-four cents) in total, plus any tax that may be chargeable to the applicants, in respect of costs and expenses;
(b) that from the expiry of the above-mentioned three months until settlement simple interest shall be payable on the above amounts at a rate equal to the marginal lending rate of the European Central Bank during the default period plus three percentage points. Done in English and in French, and delivered at a public hearing in the Human Rights Building, Strasbourg, on 23 February 2012 pursuant to Rule 77 §§ 2 and 3 of the Rules of Court.
Paragraph referring to the EU Charter in the Court judgment:
135) That non-refoulement principle is also enshrined in Article 19 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union. In that connection, the Court attaches particular weight to the content of a letter written on 15 July 2009 by Mr Jacques Barrot, Vice-President of the European Commission, in which he stressed the importance of compliance with the principle of non-refoulement in the context of operations carried out on the high seas by member States of the European Union (see paragraph 34 above).
Paragraphs referring to the EU Charter in the concurring Opinion of Judge Pinto de Albuquerque:
Provision is made in international refugee law for the prohibition of refoulement of refugees (Article 33 of the 1951 United Nations Convention relating to the Status of Refugees and Article 2 § 3 of the 1969 Organization of African Unity’s Convention Governing the Specific Aspects of Refugee Problems in Africa – “the OAU Convention”), as well as in universal human rights law (Article 3 of the 1984 United Nations Convention Against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment of Punishment and Article 16 § 1 of the 2006 United Nations International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance) and regional human rights law (Article 22 § 8 of the 1969 American Convention on Human Rights, Article 12 § 3 of the 1981 African Charter of Human Rights and People’s Rights, Article 13 § 4 of the 1985 Inter-American Convention to Prevent and Punish Torture and Article 19 § 2 of the 2000 Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union). There is no such explicit prohibition in the European Convention on Human Rights, but the principle has been acknowledged by the Court as extending beyond the similar guarantee under international refugee law.
The prohibition of collective expulsion of aliens is foreseen in Article 4 of Protocol No. 4 to the European Convention on Human Rights, Article 19 § 1 of the Charter of Fundamental Rights of the European Union, Article 12 § 5 of the African Charter on Human and People’s Rights, Article 22 § 9 of the American Convention on Human Rights, Article 26 § 2 of the Arab Charter on Human Rights, Article 25 § 4 of the Commonwealth of Independent States Convention on Human Rights and Fundamental Freedoms and Article 22 § 1 of the International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families.