Police and Border Guard Board Ordered to Reevaluate International Protection Application Due to Inadequate Actions

The lawyers of the Estonian Human Rights Centre’s Refugee Department have achieved a legal victory in Tallinn Administrative Court over the Police and Border Guard Board (PBGB). The dispute centered around the granting of international protection to a citizen of the Russian Federation who had expressed dissent towards the Russian authorities and support for Ukraine. The decision took effect on September 11, 2023.

A citizen of the Russian Federation turned to the lawyers of the Human Rights Centre after expressing his dissent towards the actions of the Russian authorities n social media and providing financial support to Ukraine in response to the start of conflict in Ukrainian territory. As a result, he faced persecution by state structures in Russia and received personal threats. Fearing for his life and safety, he submitted an application for international protection to the Estonian state, which was rejected by the Police and Border Guard Board.

The lawyers of the Estonian Human Rights Centre argued that the PBGB’s refusal was unlawful. In processing the application, the Police and Border Guard Board disregarded the evidence presented by the applicant, failed to assess the potential consequences of the facts presented, and violated administrative procedure requirements during the application review.

Based on the evidence presented, Tallinn Administrative Court determined that the complaint was justified, and the PBGB must re-examine the application for international protection.

Link to the court decision (in Estonian)

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