BAMF - Bundesamt für Migration und Flüchtlinge - Safe countries of origin

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Safe countries of origin

The law defines countries as safe countries of origin if it is possible to prove on the basis of the democratic system and of the general political situation that no state persecution is to be feared there as a rule, and that the State in question can provide protection against non-state persecution as a matter of principle. Protection against non-state persecution means for instance that there are legal and administrative provisions in place to provide protection for the population, and that these are also made accessible to all and are actually effective. The "default presumption" then applies that there is no risk of persecution.

Even if applicants come from a safe country of origin, the personal interview is no different than those with other countries of origin. It is also by no means ruled out that they can be granted protection. Applicants from safe countries of origin are afforded the opportunity during the interview to submit facts or evidence documenting that they are nonetheless at risk of persecution in their home country, in derogation from the default presumption. If this documentation is successful, they may assert their entitlement to asylum. If the new information is inadequate to refute the default presumption, the asylum application is to be denied as "manifestly unfounded". The appeal deadlines for such rejections are curtailed, which has the effect of accelerating the proceedings. This also has the effect of accelerating the proceedings for court actions that are lodged with the administrative courts (see The decision of the Federal Office and The outcome of the asylum proceedings).

Germany currently considers the following countries to be safe countries of origin:

  • the Member States of the European Union
  • Albania
  • Bosnia and Herzegovina
  • Ghana
  • Kosovo
  • Macedonia, former Yugoslav Republic of
  • Montenegro
  • Senegal
  • Serbia.

display as attention: Obligation to reside in a particular place

Applicants from safe countries of origin are obliged to live in the reception facility responsible for receiving them until the Federal Office’s decision is taken. If their asylum application is turned down as "manifestly unfounded" or "inadmissible", this then applies until they leave the country. They are not permitted to work during this period, and they may only temporarily leave the area designated in their permission to reside if they have permission from the Federal Office.

These arrangements, including the EASY distribution, do not apply to EU citizens because of the general right to freedom of movement in accordance with Artivle 18 of the EC Treaty.

Date 1 October 2016

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