Visit to Holot & Out of Hand Rejections
ARDC team members visited the Holot detention center yesterday. Despite the hot weather, hundreds of people came out for information on their rights in the asylum process, including those who had been rejected out of hand. By the end of the day, ARDC was able to counsel more than 110 people!
Over the last few months, ARDC's paralegal team has faced an unexpectedly large number of asylum seekers who came to ARDC’s office with out-of-hand rejections. In December 2015, the Ministry of Interior (MOI) began rejecting asylum claims out-of-hand. According to Clause 1 of the “Procedure for Handling Political Asylum Seekers in Israel”, asylum seekers must submit a request for asylum within one year of arrival in Israel. Individuals who did not submit asylum applications within this timeframe received rejections out-of-hand, i.e. shortly after submitting their claim and with little consideration for the specific details of their cases. ARDC took the lead in collecting data on this new development and referring strong and especially vulnerable cases to our partner organizations.