Withdrawal of protection status


Country Report: Withdrawal of protection status Last updated: 10/07/24


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Refugee status ought to be withdrawn where:[1]

  • There are serious grounds to assume to have committed an act defined as a war crime or a crime against peace and humanity under the national legislation and under the international treaties;
  • There are serious grounds to assume that he or she has committed a serious non-political crime outside the territory of Bulgaria;
  • There are serious grounds to assume that he or she commits or incites towards acts contrary to the goals and principles of the United Nations;
  • The refugee benefits from the protection or assistance provided by bodies or organisations of the United Nations other than the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees;
  • The competent authorities of his or her state of permanent residence have recognized the rights and obligations resulting from the citizenship in that country;
  • There is serious proof for regarding him or her as a danger to national security, or, having been convicted by an enforceable sentence of a serious crime, as a danger to the society

Refugee status shall also be ceased if the refugee used a false identity or produced a non-authentic, forged document or a document with false contents, while continuing to insist on their authenticity, or, intentionally gave, in an oral or written form, false information or withheld essential information concerning his or her case.

Subsidiary protection (“humanitarian status”) ought to be withdrawn if:

  • The same grounds applicable for the withdrawal of a refugee status are met;
  • A protection holder for whom there are serious reasons to assume that he or she has committed a serious crime;
  • The holder committed a crime outside the territory of Bulgaria for which the national law provides for a criminal sanction such as deprivation of liberty;
  • The holder left his/her country of origin solely in order to avoid criminal prosecution, unless the said prosecution endangers his or her life or is inhuman or degrading;

There are serious reasons to assume that he or she constitutes a serious danger to the host society or to the national security.

The procedure for withdrawing status in the law is the same as for Cessation of status. In 2023, a total of 20 withdrawals were made. The withdrawals affected individuals from the following countries of origin:[2]

Withdrawal of refugee status: 2023
Country of origin Number
N/A 0
Withdrawal of subsidiary protection: 2023
Country of origin Number
Syria 15
Iraq 4
India 1



[1] Article 12(1) LAR.

[2] SAR, reg. No. №РД05-31 from 15 January 2024.

Table of contents

  • Statistics
  • Overview of the legal framework
  • Overview of the of the main changes since the previous report update
  • Asylum Procedure
  • Reception Conditions
  • Detention of Asylum Seekers
  • Content of International Protection
  • ANNEX – Transposition of the CEAS in national legislation