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Published on September 5th, 2018 | by Georgia Archonti

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CJEU – Opinion of AG Mengozzi in Case C-652/16 Ahmedbekova, 28 June 2018

On 28 June 2018, Advocate General Mengozzi published his opinion in case C-652/16 Ahmedbekova, which concerned, inter alia, the interpretation of the recast Qualification Directive (rQD) and recast Asylum Procedures Directive with regard to the assessment of asylum applications lodged by family members.

First, AG Mengozzi put forward that a person who is of age and has legal capacity has the right to submit an asylum application on his/her own behalf, independently of the fact that the only basis for the application would be being the family member of a person who has applied for asylum. In that sense, an asylum application cannot be presented by an applicant on behalf of a person of age who has legal capacity unless this person is his/her dependent and has expressly consented to that.

The Advocate General argued that the recast Qualification Directive does not preclude the recognition of refugee status to an asylum applicant on the basis of his or her family links with a person who was, or fears becoming, the victim of acts of persecution. However, the applicant should be able to put forward an individual, well-founded fear of being a victim of persecution due to that family link.

In the AG’s view, the recast Qualification Directive and recast Procedures Directive do not preclude national authorities from putting on hold the examination of asylum claims of family members that are based on the well-founded fear of persecution of another member of the family while the outcome of this asylum application is still pending. This “suspension” must not, however, jeopardise the autonomous nature of their applications or the examination of the merits of their individual claims, regardless of the outcome of the asylum application of their family member.

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