The Greek Supreme Administrative Court (Council of State) approved the sentence of a court about the deportation of two Syrian refugees. This leading case will affect hundreds of expectative appeals by refugees. The appellants, two Syrian refugees aged 22 and 29, applied for cancellation of the former decision allowing deportation.
The case would be a milestone for the debate around the readmission agreement between Greece and Turkey. According the Joint-Action Plan, signed by Turkey and the EU, “all new irregular migrants crossing from Turkey to the Greek islands are returned to Turkey”. Specifically, both parties aspire to achieve their stated goal through targeting “the people smugglers’ business model and remov[ing] the incentive to seek irregular routes to the EU, in full accordance with EU and international law.”
However, right groups are objected to the deal since the very beginning, with concerns on human rights abuses. “Today’s ruling sets an ominous precedent for many other asylum-seekers who have fled conflict and persecution and are currently stranded on the Greek islands” said John Dalhuisen, Amnesty International’s Europe Director. ‘’These decisions breach a very clear principle: Greece and the EU should not be sending asylum-seekers and refugees back to a country in which they cannot get effective protection.”
So far, the readmission agreement covered only ones who are not qualified for international protection.