View Adopted: 2022.07.26
The author of the communication is A.I., a Burundian national. She claims that her husband worked for the Movement for Solidarity and Democracy (MSD) and that, since 2015, judges, police officers, and the armed militia of the ruling party have been persecuting the MSD members. In 2017, while she was in Sweden, the author was informed that the police had visited her house to look for her husband, and that she herself was also sought by the police. The author applied for asylum in Sweden, but her application was rejected on the grounds that her statements were contradictory and she had not provided enough evidence to support her claims. The decision was upheld by the Migration Court. The author alleges that, in light of her husband’s affiliation to the MSD, she would be exposed, if returned to Burundi, to a real risk of irreparable harm. She also claims that, if arrested, she would not be granted a fair trial. Therefore, by deporting her, the State party would violate articles 6 (right to life), 7 (prohibition of torture), 14 (right to a fair trial), and 19 (freedom of opinion and expression).
The Committee notes that the author’s claims under articles 14 and 19 have not has not been sufficiently substantiated, and are therefore inadmissible. With regard to the claims under articles 6 and 7, the Committee recalls that it is for the State party to examine the facts of the case, unless it can be established that the assessment was clearly arbitrary or amounted to a manifest error or denial of justice. Since all the author’s claims have been examined by the Swedish authorities and the author has failed to demonstrate that their assessment was clearly arbitrary or amounted to a manifest error or denial of justice, the Committee concludes that the communication is inadmissible.
In an individual partially dissenting opinion, Committee member Duncan Laki Muhumuza argues that the author indicated the risk upon her life in no uncertain terms. Therefore, the Committee should have declared the communication admissible and found a violation of article 7, likely to result in a violation of article 6. In an individual dissenting opinion, Committee member José Santos Pais argues that, in light of the political situation in Burundi and the fact that the author is sought by the police, the author would have faced a personal and real risk of irreparable harm if returned to Burundi. Therefore, the Committee should have found a violation of article 7.
By: Giacomo Bruno