B., national of the Democratic Reoublic of Congo, was rejected international protection by OFPRA and contested the decision, by arguing that she is member of the Hema ethnic group and had been victim of ethnic group clashes in her home region, Ituri. Her father was murdered by the Lendu ethnic group in February 2018 and her husband disappeared during volent attacks on her village by armed group of Lendu militiamen. In April 2019 she fled with her five children. She fears persecution upon return due to her ethnic origins and she could not benefit of state actors’ protection.
The CNDA admitted her appeal and granted her refugee status after having assessed that all her statements were credible and well documented by medical certificates and corroborated with country of origin information from relevant sources.
The CNDA stated also that the vulnerable situation of the applicant as single mother, having to take care alone of 5 children would make it difficult for her and her minor children to settle in a safe environment in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
M. S., Russian national, contested the OFPRA decision of 15 January 2020 to terminate his refugee status because he poses a threat to the security of the state and the applicant has obtained a Russian Federation passport at the Strasbourg consulate. M.S. invoked fear of persecution upon potential return to the Russian Federation due to his political opinions. OFPRA on the contrary argued circumstances related to the State security and exclusion grounds as provided in the art. 1 C (1) of the Geneva Convention.
The CNDA noted that the General Directorate of Internal Security sent a white note to the OFPRA to inform about M.S. links with partisans of radical Islamic groups and a potential threat to the state security. In a second white note, the OFPRA was informed that the applicant obtained a Russian passport on 8 May 2018, after having obtained the refugee status.
The CNDA considered itself competent to analyse first the applicability of the section 1 C1 of the Geneva Convention (termination clause) and to address this issue before addressing the applicability of section L.711-6 (threat to national security) because the later provision only applies to persons who are recognized as refugees, and its applicability depends in the first place on the existence of refugee status on the decision date.
Following a thorough analysis of the EU law, precisely the revised Qualification Directive and the CJEU caselaw, M v. Ministerstvo vnitra (C‑391/16) (CZ), and X (C‑77/17), X (C‑78/17) v. Commissaire général aux réfugiés et aux apatrides (FR), of 14 May 2019, the CNDA concluded that M.S. had voluntarily been issued a passport by the authorities of the Russian Federation, without it being proven that it had been obtained by corruption or that compelling reasons or any coercion justified this approach, and that he had therefore again placed himself under the protection of the Russian authorities. Consequently, the cessation clause is applicable in this case and in the absence of any other reasons to maintain the refugee status, the applicant’s protection must cease accordingly.
A., Somalian national, was refused international protection and in the appeal procedure CNDA upheld OFPRA decision, after having assessed that there is no risk of a serious and individual threat to her life or person as a result of the armed conflict. It ruled that this risk should be assessed in the event of a return to Mogadishu rather than Galgaduud, since she "left this region at the age of eight, did not return and had the focus of her interests in Mogadishu before her departure from her country".
The CNDA followed the same line as in its own decision of 16 December 2020 in case M.Y. v. OFPRA and based extensively its analysis on country of origin information, from various sources, including inter alia EASO Country of Origin Information Report on South and Central Somalia, March 2019, and EASO Judicial analysis report on the country of origin information, 2018.
The CNDA thoroughly assessed relevant updated sources on country of origin information to determine the level of indiscriminate violence prevailing in this region and to conclude that there is not such a level that any person would be exposed to it solely because of his presence to a serious and individual threat to his life or person. The Court considered mainly that the security accidents caused by the parties to the conflict and in particular by the Al-Shabaab militia men, do not indiscriminately target the civilian population but target in a privileged way the organs of power and international organizations and that no mass displacement of population is observed in the Benadir region, to which the city of Mogadisico is administratively attached. Moreover, it noted that the Somali capital is experiencing some economic recovery.
The CNDA also noted that the applicant did not adduce any evidence of specific elements related to her personal situation as to justoify that she would be personally exposed to the effects of the indiscriminate violence. The Court also mentioned in its reasoning the CJEU case Elgafaji, 17 February 2009.