Who is an asylum-seeker in Georgia?
You are an asylum-seeker if you submitted an oral or written request for international protection in Georgia to one of the relevant State agencies (including relevant agencies of the Ministry of Internal Affairs – border or patrol police, the Migration Department, – the prosecutor’s office, administration of the penitentiary establishments of the Ministry of Justice or of the Temporary Accommodation Centre of the Migration Department) and a final decision has not yet been taken. You can be registered as an asylum-seeker if:
- You are a foreigner or a stateless person and outside of your country of origin (or habitual residence);
- You wish to seek international protection in Georgia due to fear of persecution or risk of suffering serious harm in your country of origin (or habitual residence).
At the end of the asylum procedure, you may be granted refugee status or humanitarian status or your asylum application may be rejected. Detailed information about the asylum procedure, the difference between the refugee and the humanitarian status and other details may be provided to you by the staff of the Migration Department, UNHCR, the Ombudsman Office or NGOs.
As per the 1951 Geneva Convention relating to the Status of Refugee, a REFUGEE is a person who is outside the country of nationality or of former habitual residence and has a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion, and is unable or, owing to such fear, is unwilling to avail himself/herself of the protection of that country.
According to the 2018 Law of Georgia on International Protection, a HUMANITARIAN STATUS HOLDER is a person who does not meet the conditions for being granted refugee status, but for whom there is a real risk that upon returning to the country of origin or country of habitual residence he/she may face death penalty or a threat of such punishment, torture or inhumane or degrading treatment or punishment, or a serious individual threat to life due to indiscriminate violence, international or internal armed conflict or mass violation of human rights.
What is important to know?
- If you entered Georgia in an irregular manner (without passport, visa, or travel documents) and you intend to seek international protection, you must express your intention without delay;
- If you entered Georgia legally, you should express your wish to apply for international protection as soon as possible;
- You may approach the first State authority you encounter upon arrival (e.g. border police or patrol police at the border) or the Migration Department and state your wish to seek international protection;
- You and your family members should be ready for individual interview(s) with the staff of the Migration Department upon their notification;
- You should know that all the interview(s) and records of the interview(s) are confidential (i.e. all the information given by you will not be disclosed to anyone except for the staff of the Migration Department, who directly works with your application);
You should always tell the truth throughout the whole asylum procedure and provide as many details as possible about the reasons that prompted your departure from your country.