Sao Tome and Principe

Detains migrants or asylum seekers?

Unknown

Has laws regulating migration-related detention?

Unknown

International Migrants

2,139

2020

Population

200,000

2023

International Migrants as % of Population

0.98%

2020

Overview

Types of facilities used for migration-related detention
Administrative Ad Hoc Criminal Unknown

01 March 2021 – Sao Tome and Principe

The island nation of São Tomé and Príncipe, a former Portuguese colony located in the Gulf of Guinea in Western Africa, had reported a total of 1,786 COVID-19 cases, representing less than one percent of its population (215,000), as of February 2021. There is little information available about the impact of the pandemic on migrants […]

Read More…

R. Graça, “São Tomé e Príncipe: Mortes por Covid-19 disparam e população ignora a doença,” DW, 25 February 2021, https://www.dw.com/pt-002/s%C3%A3o-tom%C3%A9-e-pr%C3%ADncipe-mortes-por-covid-19-disparam-e-popula%C3%A7%C3%A3o-ignora-a-doen%C3%A7a/a-56699946
Last updated:

DETENTION STATISTICS

Total Migration Detainees (Entries + Remaining from previous year)
Not Available
2019

DETAINEE DATA

Total Number of Children Placed in Immigration Detention (Year)
0
2017

DETENTION CAPACITY

ALTERNATIVES TO DETENTION

ADDITIONAL ENFORCEMENT DATA

PRISON DATA

Criminal Prison Population (Year)
178
2016
185
2011
240
2009
155
2005
130
2002
99
1994
87
1992
Percentage of Foreign Prisoners (Year)
0.8
2002
Prison Population Rate (per 100,000 of National Population)
85
2016
101
2011
139
2009
99
2005
90
2002
77
1994
71
1992

POPULATION DATA

Population (Year)
200,000
2023
200,000
2020
International Migrants (Year)
2,139
2020
2,174
2019
International Migrants as Percentage of Population (Year)
0.98
2020

SOCIO-ECONOMIC DATA & POLLS

LEGAL & REGULATORY FRAMEWORK

Does the Country Detain People for Migration, Asylum, or Citizenship Reasons?
Unknown
2022
Does the Country Have Specific Laws that Provide for Migration-Related Detention?
Unknown
2023
Legal Tradition(s)
Customary law
2017
Civil law
2017

GROUNDS FOR DETENTION

Children & Other Vulnerable Groups
Unaccompanied minors (Not mentioned) No
2015
Accompanied minors (Not mentioned) No
2015

LENGTH OF DETENTION

DETENTION INSTITUTIONS

PROCEDURAL STANDARDS & SAFEGUARDS

COSTS & OUTSOURCING

COVID-19 DATA

TRANSPARENCY

MONITORING

NATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS MONITORING BODIES

NATIONAL PREVENTIVE MECHANISMS (OPTIONAL PROTOCOL TO UN CONVENTION AGAINST TORTURE)

NON-GOVERNMENTAL ORGANISATIONS (NGOs)

GOVERNMENTAL MONITORING BODIES

INTERNATIONAL DETENTION MONITORING

INTERNATIONAL TREATIES & TREATY BODIES

International Treaties Ratified
Ratification Year
Observation Date
ICESCR, International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
2017
2018
CAT, Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment
2017
2017
CTOCSP, Protocol against the Smuggling of Migrants by Land, Sea and Air, supplementing the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime
2006
2017
CTOCTP, Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children
2006
2017
CRSR, Geneva Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees
1978
2017
CRPD, Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
2015
2017
ICRMW, International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families
2017
2017
CRC, Convention on the Rights of the Child
1991
2017
CEDAW, Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women
2003
2017
ICCPR, International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights
2017
2017
ICESCR, International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
2017
2017
ICERD, International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination
2017
2017
VCCR, Vienna Convention on Consular Relations
1983
2017
Ratio of relevant international treaties ratified
Ratio: 13/19
Individual Complaints Procedures
Acceptance Year
CEDAW, Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, 1999 2017
2017
ICCPR, First Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, 1966 2017
2017
Ratio of Complaints Procedures Accepted
Observation Date
2/8
2017

> UN Special Procedures

> UN Universal Periodic Review

Relevant Recommendations or Observations from the UN Universal Periodic Review
Observation Date
No 2015
2017
No 2011
2017

> Global Compact for Migration (GCM)

> Global Compact on Refugees (GCR)

REGIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS MECHANISMS

Regional Legal Instruments
Year of Ratification (Treaty) / Transposed (Directive) / Adoption (Regulation)
Observation Date
ACHPR, African Charter on Human and Peoples Rights 1986
1986
2017

HEALTH CARE PROVISION

HEALTH IMPACTS

COVID-19

Country Updates
The island nation of São Tomé and Príncipe, a former Portuguese colony located in the Gulf of Guinea in Western Africa, had reported a total of 1,786 COVID-19 cases, representing less than one percent of its population (215,000), as of February 2021. There is little information available about the impact of the pandemic on migrants in the country, who in 2015 made up a mere 1.3 percent of its population, or with respect to immigration detainees or prisoners. The country does not have a functioning asylum procedure. The U.S. State Department’s 2019 Country Report on Human Rights Practices in São Tomé and Príncipe reported that the country had overcrowded prisons that lacked medical services and infrastructure, and failed to separate pretrial and convicted detainees, and children and adults. It also reported that roughly 25 percent of the imprisoned population were pretrial detainees. The country recorded its first four COVID-19 cases on 6 April 2020, the last country in Africa to do so. The country announced a state of emergency in March, before it reported its first case of infection, which included an international travel ban except for citizens. On 6 May 2020, a new lockdown was imposed, which only allowed exceptions for essential businesses, shift workers, and food service providers, until 17 May 2020. The state of emergency was downgraded to a “state of alert” in June, and then upgraded again to a “state of calamity” in November 2020, which remained in place as of February 2021.