Malta’s detention regime blasted by the European Court of Human Rights!

Malta must take concrete steps to bring its detention regime in line with human rights standards. The European Court of Human Rights has said this in no unclear teams in a judgement we are celebrating as a victory for human rights in Malta!

Today, the Court delivered judgement in A.D. v. Malta. Together with JRS Malta, we had brought this case in March 2022 whilst AD was in detention and in collaboration with Advancing Child Right Strategic Litigation, ACRiSL.

The Court found a violation of Article 3 (prohibition of inhuman and degrading treatment), Article 5 (right to liberty) and Article 13 in conjunction with Article 3 (right to an effective remedy).

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Strengthening access to justice for migrant children

One of the main obstacles in access to justice for migrant children is the lack of lawyers specialized in international human rights and EU law on children’s rights and on the use of international human rights mechanisms, who can act as an effective point of entry to the justice system for migrant children.

To enhance access to justice for migrant children across the EU, the project aims to create pools of national lawyers in Bulgaria, Germany, Greece, Italy, Ireland, Malta and Spain who are able to defend migrant children’s rights effectively through the courts and to assert the right of the child to be heard and to have her or his views taken into consideration in judicial proceedings.

The project will establish a European group of lawyers with expertise in strategic litigation for migrant children’s rights, who can act as agents of change both in their own countries and at European level.

In order to support migrant children as they seek to enjoy their fundamental human rights, we’re teaming up with colleagues from International Commission of Jurists – European Institutions (Lead Partner), Greek Council for Refugees (GCR) (EL), Fundacion Raices (ES), Bundesfachverband Unbegleitete Minderjährige Flüchtlinge e.V. (B-UMF) (DE), Legal Clinic for Immigrant and Refugees (LCIR) (BG), Immigrant Council of Ireland (ICI) (IR), and Scuola Superiore Sant’Anna (SSSA).

FAIR will gives us the opportunity to focus on extremely vulnerable persons. We will be able to strengthen the structures intended to support children as they make their way through various procedures and institutions.

It’s a great opportunity to alert the legal community to childrens’ rights, as well as to work with expert colleagues and friends! (Neil Falzon, aditus foundation Director).

Fostering Access for Immigrant children’s Rights (FAIR) will be implemented from 1 March 2016 through to 1 March 2018. We’ll be organising various activities gears towards improving access to rights for migrant children.

The project is co-funded by the Rights, Equality and Citizenship Programme of the EU and the Open Society Institute Budapest Foundation, and implemented in cooperation with the AIRE Center, Child Rights Connect, and the Associazione per gli Studi Giuridici sull’Immigrazione (ASGI) (Italy).

You can see full project details here.

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Co-funded by the Rights, Equality and Citizenship (REC) Programme of the European Union.

This publication has been produced with the financial support of the Rights, Equality and Citizenship (REC) Programme of the European Union. The contents of this publication are the sole responsibility of the project partners and can in no way be taken to reflect the views of the European Commission.

Workshop on the M.S.S. judgement

aditus attends a full-day workshop organised by the International Commission of Jurists.  The aim of the workshop is to discuss international and national perspectives of the recent ECtHR M.S.S. judgement against Belgium and Greece.  Held in Brussels, the workshop brought together NGOs and lawyers to analyse the several points raised in the judgement.

For aditus, Neil Falzon highlighted that possible impact of M.S.S. is primarily related to the fact that Malta is a country receiving Dublin II returns and the criteria established by the Court could potentially be applied vis-á-vis Malta.  This in view of the substandard living conditions for asylum-seekers, refugees and other migrants in Malta’s open centres.

Neil also raised the question as to whether the M.S.S. criteria could also be used extra-territorially, in the context of EU MS deporting third-country nationals to their countries of origin, or to transit countries.