Cessation and review of protection status

Serbia

Country Report: Cessation and review of protection status Last updated: 23/03/21

Author

Nikola Kovačević

Under Article 81 of the Asylum Act, refugee status shall cease where the person:

  1. Has voluntarily re-availed him or herself of the protection of his or her country of origin;
  2. Having lost his or her nationality, has re-acquired it;
  3. Has acquired a new nationality, and thus enjoys the protection of the country of his or her new nationality;
  4. Has voluntarily re-established him or herself in the country which he or she left or outside which he or she remained owing to fear of persecution or harassment;
  5. Can no longer continue to refuse to avail him or herself of the protection of his or her country of origin or habitual residence, because the circumstances in connection with which he or she has been granted protection have ceased to exist;

In considering the change of circumstances ground, the Asylum Office must assess whether the change of circumstances is of such a significant and non-temporary nature that the fear of persecution can no longer be regarded as well-founded. The Asylum Office is obliged to inform the person about the grounds for cessation and allow him or her to make statement regarding the facts relevant for the cessation of protection. The beneficiary is entitled to invoke compelling reasons arising out of previous persecution or harassment for refusing to avail him or herself of the protection of the country of origin or the country of former habitual residence.[1] Even though the cessation institute has never been applied, it is reasonable to assume that refugees who could be subjected to such practice in future would have at their disposal free legal aid from CSOs.

The Asylum Act also provides that the Asylum Office will pass a decision on cessation of subsidiary protection when the circumstances in connection with which it has been granted have ceased to exist or have changed to such a degree that the protection is no longer required, or the person no longer faces a risk of serious harm. The beneficiary is entitled to, after he or she was informed by the Asylum Office about the grounds for cessation, to invoke compelling reasons arising out of previous serious harm for refusing to avail him or herself of the protection of the country of origin or the country of former residence.[2]

After it has determined that there are reasons for the cessation of refugee status or subsidiary protection, the Asylum Office shall ex officio revoke a decision upholding the asylum application.[3] Not a single CSO which provide free legal aid to asylum seekers have reported such practice.[4]

[1]           Article 81(4), (5) and (6) Asylum Act.

[2]           Article 82 Asylum Act.

[3]           Article 83 Asylum Act.

[4]           Information obtained in December 2020 from APC, BCHR, BCMHA, HCIT and IDEAS.

Table of contents

  • Statistics
  • Overview of the legal framework
  • Overview of the main changes since the previous report update
  • Asylum Procedure
  • Reception Conditions
  • Detention of Asylum Seekers
  • Content of International Protection