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Afghans seeking protection in Europe: ECRE's compilation of information on evacuations, pathways to protection and access to asylum in Europe for Afghans since August 2021

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This document summarises information on past and current evacuation schemes available for Afghans, other pathways to protection, and the treatment of Afghan international protection applicants. The information was collected from ECRE member organisations, the ELENA network and from open source material. It particularly benefited from an overview prepared by JRS Europe.

It is a non-exhaustive overview based on the information available at the moment of compiling the data. The information was collected from August until mid-December 2021. All efforts have been made to ensure that the information is up to date, but please note that some of the measures referred to may have changed in the meantime.

The purpose of the document is to assist others to monitor, analyse and influence the issues covered in the document. The information or views it contains do not necessarily represent ECRE’s position. The data provided per country may differ depending on the availability of information. This is due to the limited publicly available information in most of the European countries covered by this publication.

The document is structured into three chapters:

The first chapter provides an overview of past evacuation schemes, meaning those started during August 2021 and in operation until the end of August 2021, and which were operated directly from Kabul, and subsequent evacuation schemes that have been in place since then, consisting of indirect evacuations through Pakistan or Iran or from Kabul via Qatar. It also provides information about procedures on arrival and, where applicable, the status that Afghans are granted.

The second chapter focuses on pathways to protection for Afghans beyond the evacuation schemes for those previously identified as being at risk. It covers the availability of humanitarian visas, access to family reunification, and resettlement schemes.

The final chapter deals with the treatment of Afghans who were already in Europe by August 2021, covering access to asylum, treatment of asylum applications, detention practices, and reception conditions. The document does not seek to analyse the actions of the states in question, nor does it provide any sort of critical or qualitative assessment. The purpose is to compile factual and descriptive information insofar as that is available.