Judgment delivered on 20 June 2018
Sarah Abdul Hadi and others
Statsborgerforeningen (association representing stateless persons) acting for
The Ministry of Immigration and Integration
Stateless Palestinians who had originally been refused Danish citizenship in contravention of Denmark’s international obligations were not entitled to additional compensation
The case concerned the issue of whether 17 previously stateless Palestinians were entitled to compensation for the consequences of their delayed acquisition of Danish citizenship.
With regard to ten of the appellants, the Supreme Court found that their applications for Danish citizenship had been processed in accordance with the international rules governing stateless persons, and that there was accordingly no basis for awarding them compensation.
With regard to six of the appellants, the Danish Ministry of Immigration and Integration had recognised that they could have acquired Danish citizenship earlier had their applications been processed in accordance with the international rules governing stateless persons. Against this background, the Ministry had recognised that there was a basis for awarding compensation to these six for the delay, and that the appropriate amount of compensation was DKK 10,000. The Supreme Court held that there was no basis for awarding additional compensation to the appellants.
As regards the last appellant, the Ministry had stated that the claim was time-barred, as the proceedings were instituted more than three years after the time when the appellant’s application was wrongfully refused, and as there were no grounds for suspension of the limitation period. The Supreme Court stated that the appellant had committed an error of law, and that there were no special circumstances to justify an exceptional suspension of the limitation period.
The Supreme Court dismissed the claims for compensation against the Ministry.