29. August 2012 · Kommentare deaktiviert für UN Bericht zu (Abschiebe-)Haft in Tunesien · Kategorien: Tunesien · Tags: ,

UN Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants concludes first country visit in his regional study on the human rights of migrants at the borders of the European Union: Visit to Tunisia



„Firstly, I am concerned that irregular border crossing remains a criminal offence in Tunisia (franchissement illégal de la frontière). This contravenes fundamental principles of human rights including the right to leave ones country (Art. 12, ICCPR). Whilst the Tunisian authorities insist that this is not regularly applied against Tunisians, I learned of cases where it was in fact used, including against foreigners entering Tunisia irregularly, and who were subsequently imprisoned for the alleged offence. I also met with an unaccompanied minor who had been charged with crossing the border into Tunisia illegally. He was sentenced to 9 days prison, which he served in a juvenile facility, and was thereafter transferred to a detention center awaiting deportation. […]

Moreover, migrants who either find themselves without valid documents or who have served a prison sentence are often sent to ‘centres d’accueil et d’orientation’ in order to be deported. I visited one such center, Ouardia, in the South of Tunis. Whilst the facilities were commendable, persons in these centres are not free to leave. I would like to stress that even though the Tunisian government insist that Ouardia and other such centres are “centres d’accueil et d’orientation”, as long as persons are deprived of their liberty in these facilities, they are in fact detention centres. I am particularly concerned that minors are held in these centres as well. In the case of a particular minor I met with, he had been in the center for 21 days, had not been in touch with his family, who were not aware of his whereabouts, and he was not allowed to meet with consular authorities until he self harmed in order to get the attention of the staff. Detention should be a measure of last resort, alternatives to detention should be developed, and detention should certainly never be applied against unaccompanied minors.

I also met with migrants who had been charged with criminal offences and who find themselves detained in Tunisian prisons. Many of these migrant detainees claimed that they had no access to a lawyer or the ability to make phone calls to family members or consular authorities. I also remain concerned about the detention of some young Libyan men, allegedly for drug consumption. Though they deny having possessed any drugs in Tunisia, the cases against these individuals are reportedly based on blood or urine analysis, which they claim reveal drug consumption before entering Tunisian territory, which could indicate no crime actually committed on Tunisian soil. Many of these migrants suspect these charges are being used as a pretext for detaining them as Libyan nationals in Tunisia. I thus urge that due process of law be granted to all migrants when facing criminal charges, and they be afforded all the rights and guarantees provided for in international law.

Furthermore, I am also concerned by the fact that some Tunisians, who I met with and who were in pre-trial detention, have been charged with participation in smuggling of migrants, even though their participation had been limited to peripheral acts and they did not appear to be connected with the organization of the smuggling operations.“


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