UPR of Spain Largely Ignores Interdiction and Readmission Practices

Spain was one of 15 countries whose records were reviewed during the 8th session of the Human Rights Council’s Universal Periodic Review (UPR) Working Group from 3-15 May 2010.  While reference is made to the treatment of asylum seekers and migrants who reach Spanish territory, little attention was directed (at least not in the national report or the Working Group’s Draft report) to the treatment of migrants intercepted at sea before reaching Spanish territory in the Canary Islands or elsewhere.  Likewise little attention was paid to the provisions and implementation of Spain’s several bilateral readmission agreements with various countries such as Senegal.

According to the Draft report, Spain agreed with a general recommendation to “[t]ake all measures necessary to ensure that actions related to unaccompanied minors (migrants, asylum seekers, refugees, victims of trafficking) are in line with international standards.” [Section II, Para. 84(54).]  But Spain did not agree to several more specific recommendations, instead agreeing only to “examine” and “provides responses” to the recommendations no later than September 2010 when the Human Rights Council meets for its 15th session.

Three of the more detailed recommendations were:

  • “Respect fully the principle of non-refoulement and ensure effective access to asylum procedures, taking into account the objectives of UNHCR’s 10-Point Plan on Mixed Migration” (New Zealand);
  • “Undertake a review of its readmission agreements with respect to refugees and asylum-seekers, and amend them as necessary to ensure that they contain human rights guarantees in line with international standards” (Canada); and
  • “Consider access to asylum procedures for victims of trafficking (Costa Rica).

[Section II, Para. 86(28-30).]

Click here for link to UPR site for Spain.

Click here for the Draft report of the Working Group.

Click here for Spain’s national report submitted to the Working Group.

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Filed under Eastern Atlantic, Mediterranean, News, OHCHR, Reports, Spain, UNHCR

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