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UNHCR recalls the urgency to solve the situation of asylum seekers at the Madrid-Barajas airport

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UNHCR recalls the urgency to solve the situation of asylum seekers at the Madrid-Barajas airport

31 January 2024
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Madrid- UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency, has reiterated to the Spanish authorities its concern about the lack of dignified reception conditions for asylum seekers and for the processing of their requests for international protection at Adolfo Suárez Madrid-Barajas airport. UNHCR is working with the authorities to put in place urgent solutions to the current situation.

As part of the supervisory role that Spanish asylum legislation recognizes to UNHCR, the UN Refugee Agency participates in the asylum procedure at the border, issuing its recommendation on the admissibility of asylum applications submitted at border posts. To this end, UNHCR assesses each individual case and stresses the importance of the asylum procedure being carried out under adequate conditions and with respect for the dignity of both the asylum seekers and the professionals who attend them, and in accordance with the standards established by national and European regulations.

UNHCR is collaborating with the Spanish authorities by providing technical support and assisting in the coordination between the different actors involved in the asylum procedure at the border, among other measures. In this regard, and in view of the erroneous information that has been disseminated in some media about UNHCR's functions at the airport, the UN Refugee Agency clarifies that it will not replace and has not assumed the work carried out by NGOs at Barajas airport.

UNHCR reiterates its willingness to collaborate and welcomes the announcement of the forthcoming opening of a new reception space at the airport and trusts the efforts being made by all Spanish authorities to implement additional urgent measures to resolve a highly complex situation.