EIT:n suuri jaosto saa arvioitavakseen turvapaikanhakijoiden valituksen maahan pääsyn estämisestä

18.4.2024 | Oikeusuutiset

Markku Fredman

Grand Chamber to examine case concerning Cuban nationals’ allegations of “pushbacks” from Lithuania to Belarus

The Chamber of the European Court of Human Rights to which the case C.O.C.G. and Others v. Lithuania (application no. 17764/22) had been allocated has relinquished jurisdiction in favour of the Grand Chamber of the Court.

The case concerns four Cuban nationals and their repeated attempts in March and April 2022 to enter Lithuania by crossing the border with Belarus. They submit that on each attempt Lithuanian border guards pushed them back, at gunpoint, into Belarusian territory, without giving them an opportunity to submit asylum applications. They eventually entered Lithuania on 13 April 2022 and were apprehended. The case also concerns their subsequent deprivation of liberty in a centre for asylum seekers.

They stayed in the forest near the border until 8 April 2022 when they crossed again into Lithuania and contacted volunteers who helped them lodge a request for interim measures (under Rule 39 of the Rules of Court) with the European Court of Human Rights. On the same day, the Court granted their request and notified the Lithuanian Government that, provided that the applicants were on the Lithuanian territory, they should not be expelled from the country until 6 May 2022. The volunteers contacted the border authorities, informing them about the Court’s decision, and they sent a copy of that decision to the applicants by text message. The applicants were however apprehended by border guards who returned them to Belarus the following morning. The border authorities later stated that, at that time, they had been unable to verify the accuracy of the information about the interim measures ordered by the Court.

There are currently over 30 cases pending before the Court against Lithuania, Latvia and Poland concerning the situation at the Belarusian borders from spring 2021 to summer 2023.

Press release



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