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Violence suffered in Libya and international protection (Italian Supreme Court order no. 4315/2022).

The Supreme Court annuls the decree of the Court of Venice rejecting the application for international protection, stating that, for the purposes of the recognition of humanitarian protection, the fact that the applicant suffers from post-traumatic stress disorder due to the violence suffered in the country of transit is important.

In this case, an asylum seeker from Ghana stated that he had left his country of origin because he had been persecuted because he had been arrested in connection with the use of illegal machinery in his activity as a gold miner. Once he arrived in the country, he stated that he had been subjected to violence and abuse, which was duly documented by a consultancy attached to the appeal at first instance.

The order of the court of legitimacy shows that post-traumatic stress disorder, due to what he experienced in Libya, is an element of vulnerability relevant to the recognition of humanitarian protection. The Supreme Court then reiterates the orientation already expressed several times (ex multis, Cass. SSU 24413/2021) regarding the comparison between the living conditions achieved in Italy and the conditions in which the applicant would find himself if repatriated. "On the subject of humanitarian protection, if the applicant claims, in support of his condition of vulnerability, to be suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder due to the abuse suffered in the country of transit, the judge, if the particular condition alleged is ascertained, must specifically assess its incidence, since he may well, the comparative assessment between the subjective and objective condition in which the foreigner would find himself in the country of origin and the level of integration achieved in Italy, may be legally attenuated, when not recessive, in the face of an event capable of affecting, in itself, because of the high degree of trauma, the person's condition of vulnerability (Cass. 8990/2021)".

Prof. Avv. Paolo Iafrate

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