FRA - Opinion of the European Union Agency for Fundamental Rights on fundamental rights in the ‘hotspots’ set up in Greece and Italy

Source :

Date : 29 novembre 2016

« Without being exhaustive, this opinion discusses selected topics which touch certain Charter rights, identifying the challenges and describing measures that could be taken to mitigate the risk of actions, which are not compliant with the Charter. It does not focus exclusively on risks arising in direct relation to the involvement of EU actors on the ground, but also takes into account that the hotspot approach entails a certain share of responsibility of the EU for the situation in the hotspots overall.

Given that the majority of practical experience with the operation of the hotspots was collected during FRA’s field presence in Greece, this opinion is based to a great extent on FRA observations. These are complemented by desk research and findings from FRA missions to Italy. The advice provided therein is conceived in a manner as to be valid for the hotspots in both countries, or indeed for any potential similar operation elsewhere in Europe in the future.

The opinion covers the following :

  • Access to international protection
  • Rights of the child
  • Identification of vulnerabilities
  • Safety for all persons in the hotspots
  • Readmissions »

Table des matières :



1. Access to international protection

1.1 Addressing delays in processing applications for international protection
1.2 Ensuring access to asylum for unaccompanied children
1.3 Enhancing provision of information on asylum
1.4 Complying with the Charter when taking fingerprints
1.5 Increasing availability of legal support and legal aid

2. Rights of the child

2.1 Ensuring a functioning system of guardianship for unaccompanied children
2.2 Standardising procedures for separated children
2.3 Ensuring protection of unaccompanied children without resorting to
2.4 Providing adequate conditions and access to services for children
2.5 Vetting of staff who have direct and regular contacts with children

3. Identification of vulnerabilities

3.1 Ensuring identification upon arrival and throughout stay
3.2 Providing an adequate response to trafficking in human beings
3.3 Deploying sufficient female staff to identify women at risk

4. Safety for all persons in the hotspots

4.1 Providing information to mitigate tensions
4.2 Adapting the infrastructure and operation of the hotspots to reflect gender diversity
4.3 Mitigating the risk of violence, abuse and exploitation of children
4.4 Enhancing outreach to the communities in the hotspots

5. Readmissions

5.1 Enhancing training and skills of return escorts
5.2 Ensuring systematic monitoring of forced returns
5.3 Conducting an individual assessment before depriving persons subject to readmission of their liberty
5.4 Communicating effectively and providing information during
the readmission procedure


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