A reception center for Afghan refugees set up by the Italian Red Cross in Avezzano | Photo: ANSA/Massimo Percossi
A reception center for Afghan refugees set up by the Italian Red Cross in Avezzano | Photo: ANSA/Massimo Percossi

A Rome court has ordered Italy to issue humanitarian visas to two Afghans. ASGI said the Italian state created unjustified obstacles for the Afghans seeking safety.

The Court of Rome upheld a request by two young Afghan nationals seeking safety in Italy on Friday (January 14), according to reports from the Association for Juridical Studies on Immigration (ASGI). The court reportedly ordered Italian authorities to issue them humanitarian visas within ten days.

According to ASGI, the Rome court ruled that the foreign ministry had attempted to evade a previous court order in favor of the Afghans.

The same court reportedly already ruled in favor of the two journalists on December 21, 2021, when they found that they faced imminent and current risk in Afghanistan and should be issued humanitarian visas pursuant to Art. 25 of the EU Visa Code.

No humanitiarian corridors yet

ASGI claimed that after the December decision, "the [Italian] foreign ministry immediately created obstacles, suggesting that they sign up for humanitarian corridors (pretending not to know that they have not yet been activated) or to prove, with documentation, that their reception and integration in Italy had been properly funded."

The association said that "the young Afghans immediately asked the Rome court once more to find out exactly how the December order would be implemented [and] on January 14, 2022, the court found that the ministry had engaged in behavior that evaded the judicial order and ordered the issuance of humanitarian visas within 10 days," ASGI reported.

ASGI says state has responsibility

ASGI said that judges decided that the two Afghans were eligible for Italian visas "solely on the basis of humanitarian reasons or international obligations [which] cannot be linked to any additional conditions." They argued that "[the court's] decision de facto rejects the ministry's attempt to privatize the reception of those arriving in Italy with visas for humanitarian reasons, putting the burden entirely on private entities despite the fact that this reception is an obligation for the state as part of specific dispositions from the EU, which provides funds for this."

 

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