Central Reception Centre Ter Apel

The updated Country Report on the Netherlands analyses recent developments in practice and case law governing asylum procedures, reception conditions, detention of asylum seekers and integration of beneficiaries of protection.

In 2016 the Netherlands reformed the asylum procedure by introducing the so-called “Five Tracks” procedure. Track 1 constitutes a Dublin procedure. Track 4 represents the standard asylum procedure of 8 days with the possibility to extend this time limit by 6 days. In case the application cannot be thoroughly assessed within the standard/regular asylum procedure there is a possibility of assessing the application in the extended Procedure. Track 3 and 5, which introduce fast track procedures are not applied in practice (yet). A completely new track 2 has been introduced, aiming at processing applications made by applicants from safe countries of origin and applicants who have received international protection status in a different EU Member State. The assessment of a claim in Track 2 takes place in less than 8 days and the asylum seeker is not entitled to a rest and preparation period nor a medical examination.

Further, more legal grounds for detention have been introduced in 2016, allowing the Netherlands to detain aliens who pose their asylum application at the border for a maximum period of four weeks. Territorial detention is generally possible under the new law in cases where the asylum seeker poses as national security risk or when the person is evading or impeding departure. Further conditions for detention are for the purpose of acquiring information on a person’s asylum claim as well as acquiring information necessary for the asylum claim. A new law on alternatives to detention has been accepted, but will only enter into force in 2017.

Read the full country report here.