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Supreme Court of Denmark

Detention of rejected asylum seeker 

Case no. 155/2018

Order made on 16 April 2019   

The North-Zealand Police, the North-Zealand Immigration Office

No basis for continued detention of rejected asylum seeker

In the period 25 October 2017 to 17 July 2018, A was detained pending his return to Iraq. The reason for detaining him was that he did not have lawful residence in Denmark, and that he refused to cooperate in the efforts to return him to his home country of Iraq. The case concerned whether the High Court was right in finding in its order of 30 May 2018 that the detention at this time should be continued.

The Supreme Court stated that, in such situation, it was necessary to make a general assessment of whether, by continuing to hold him in custody, there was a possibility that he would consent to the return, or whether it was possible that the recipient country's authorities would change their position and allow his return without his consent.

The Supreme Court noted that at the time of the High Court's order, when A had been detained for over seven months, there was no information on effective expulsion efforts that indicated that the deadlocked situation could be resolved and the process advanced before expiry of the absolute deadline for release of a total of 18 months. On this basis, the Supreme Court found that the conditions for continued detention of A were not fulfilled at the time of the High Court's order.

The High Court had reached a different conclusion.

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