Romanian Roma seek asylum in Ireland

05 January 1999

The Irish Times reported on October 23, 1998 that forty-seven Romanian Roma who had arrived at the Irish port of Rosslare concealed in freight containers in August and immediately sought asylum, had had their initial applications turned down within three weeks. One of the Roma, eighteen-year-old Ms Rodica Stana, was in labour in hospital in Monaghan, north Ireland, when the initial asylum interviews were carried out, so was not able to attend her interview. According to The Irish Times, Ms Stana's application was turned down anyway, on the basis of her written information. The paper also reported that the Roma were allegedly not provided with an interpreter for their interview.

The group had obtained a solicitor, who reported to the ERRC that the Roma had all immediately appealed the initial decision on their applications and at the time of writing the appeals had all been heard and decisions were pending. The case is complicated by the fact that the Roma had previously unsuccessfully applied for asylum in Germany, and in some cases in France as well. This fact entitles the Irish Government to reject the applications under the Dublin Convention and return the Roma to France or Germany. (ERRC, The Irish Times)


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