A German court has made a landmark ruling saying that not all Syrians who arrive in Germany should be afforded full asylum status as they may not be politically persecuted if they return to Syria.
The ruling, by the Higher Administrative Court in the region of Schleswig, confirms the current practice of the Federal Agency for Migration and Refugees (BAMF) who have been subject to over 30,000 lawsuits from migrants demanding full asylum status, reports German paper Zeit.
Uta Strzyz, the chairman of the Third Senate, said that there was no reason to suspect the Syrian government was actively persecuting the general population. Only if the Syrians can prove that going back to Syria would lead to their persecution can they be granted full asylum status in Germany.
Of the 30,000 who have made complaints against BAMF for full asylum status, some 2,600 have been successful. Many of those suing the government have been granted what is known as subsidiary protection. This ensures that the migrants cannot be deported back to their home countries, but prevents family reunification from occurring in the near future.
The ruling goes against the conventional notion that all Syrians fleeing the Syrian civil war are legitimate refugees. This assertion was rocked earlier this year when reports came out that revealed supposed asylum seekers were going on holiday to the countries they had fled – including Syrian ‘refugees’ vacationing in Syria.
Many Syrians and other migrants have also been leaving Europe and heading back to their countries of origin as the reality of their life in Europe didn’t meet up to their own expectations. A study from the University of Warwick showed a trend of migrants leaving Europe, or simply staying in Turkey, where they felt the conditions were better for them.
The case of migrants suing the German government is also not unique as many thousands sued earlier in the year – not because they wanted better asylum status, but because the applications were taking too long to be approved. The long wait for an asylum claim to be processed, sometimes upward of nine months, has been another reason for migrants to return to their countries.
Some Syrian migrants have gone to great lengths to return to the country they were supposedly fleeing by hiring the very people traffickers that brought them to Europe to smuggle them back to Syria. One Syrian student gave his reason for returning saying: “I want to go to Syria and continue my studies at the art school. Even if they open borders, I will still go. I am very angry with the Europeans because of the situation in which we live.”