Duncan Lewis Solicitors obtain unprecedented generic injunction from the Court of Appeal in relation to removals to Afghanistan. A significant portion of those due to removed on charter flight on 25 August 2015 have been granted a stay on their removal.
HN (Afghanistan) & Ors v SSHD C2/2015/2582
Following the order by Lord Justice Clarke granting permission to appeal in the case of on six grounds in relation the potential risk of serious harm faced by asylum applicants to Afghanistan, Duncan Lewis Solicitors sought a generic stay for those due to be removed on the charter flight on 25 August who shared the same characteristics as the Appellants in HN (Afghanistan).
The Secretary of State sought to vary the order by Clarke LJ in relation to the grant of interim relief for each of the Appellants.
These applications were heard before Clarke LJ at the Court of Appeal on Friday 21 August 2015.
Sonali Naik of Garden Court Chambers, counsel for the Appellants argued that the risk of serious harm under 15 (c) of the Qualification Directive for returnees had not been resolved following the grant of permission to appeal and sought an order under similar terms to the order granted by Lady Justice Rafferty prior to the previous charter flight on 21 April 2015.
The SSHD’s application was refused by Clarke LJ on the basis that there was a potential irrevocable risk of serious harm if the Appellants in HN (Afghanistan) were removed prior to a final decision.
Significantly, Clarke LJ granted generic relief on the basis that a significant number due to be removed on this flight would be directly affected the HN (Afghanistan) litigation.
The Order set out by Clarke LJ forbids the removal of anyone who was habitually resident in an ‘insecure province’. These are defined as any province other than Kabul, Bamyam and Panjshir.
Toufique Hossain of Duncan Lewis, solicitor for the Appellants states;
‘It is clear that the deteriorating security situation in Afghanistan means that the UK government needs to seriously consider their current policy on returns to Kabul. In what is unprecedented, the Court of Appeal has had to again intervene at the last minute. We understand that the cost of cancelling a Charter flight for the Secretary of State is significant
The order granting permission by Lord Justice Clarke demonstrates that the issues in this case have yet to be properly resolved and it is surely reasonable to await the outcome of the final decision by the Court before booking costly Charter flights, looking to effect removal to Afghanistan.
The eventual hearing in HN(Afghanistan) is due to be expedited.
Counsel for the Appellants: Sonali Naik, Louise Hooper, Bryony Poyner and Ali Bandegani – Garden Court chambers.
Feel free to contact the Duncan Lewis legal team for more details.
Lewis Kett on 020 3114 1178 or email on firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jamie Bell on 020 3114 1184 or email on email@example.com.
Toufique Hossain on 020 3114 1128 or email on firstname.lastname@example.org.