On 18 July 2022, The Administrative Court of Munich suspended the Federal Office’s deportation order regarding the transfer to Hungary under the Dublin III Regulation. The case concerned five Afghan nationals of Tajik ethnicity who left Afghanistan with the assistance of Hungarian soldiers after the Taliban took power.
After the applicants travelled through Uzbekistan and Hungary, they filed international protection applications in Germany. The applicants indicated that they had no contact with state facilities or institutions during their time in Hungary, and that they had not filed an asylum application there. During their stay in Hungary, the applicants were accommodated in closed reception centres without any contact with the asylum authorities or the possibility to initiate an asylum procedure.
The German Federal Office considered their applications inadmissible, addressing Hungarian authorities who confirmed their responsibility to process the asylum applications. The applicants appealed this decision, relying on the systemic deficiencies in the asylum system in Hungary (previously confirmed by the Court of Justice of the European Union in the case C-808/18) and requesting to suspend the deportation order.
The second applicant was able to provide the medical documentation confirming the need for constant medical assistance, which was not provided during their stay in the Hungarian closed reception centre. Moreover, the applicants indicated poor reception conditions, including overcrowded rooms where children had to sleep on the floor.
The Administrative Court of Munich acknowledged that the fact that the applicants were evacuated by Hungarian soldiers from Kabul airport via Uzbekistan to Hungary does not change the irregularity of the border crossing within the meaning of the Dublin III Regulation. Moreover, the Court reiterated the principle of mutual trust between the Member States of the European Union, according to which the rights are presumed to be equally respected by every state. The Court underlined that in order to rebut this presumption, circumstances that reach a particular threshold of seriousness must be substantiated and, if necessary, proven.
Based on the previous case law of the Court as well as Hungary Country reports, the Court came to the conclusion that it is not clear whether as Dublin returnees the applicants would be able to file applications for refugee protection in Hungary. It was also confirmed by the respondent in the case that the transfers to Hungary are carried out only if the Hungarian authorities provide assurances in individual cases that reception conditions and asylum procedures requirements will be met. Such individual assurances by the Hungarian authorities were not provided in the present case and, therefore, the Court decided to suspend the transfer given that the abuses in the Hungarian asylum system were likely to remain and that there was a potential risk that the applicants may be subjected to inhuman or degrading treatment.