Costa Rica

Not Available

Immigration detainees

2019

Not Available

Detained children

2017

60,101

New asylum applications

2019

6,204

Refugees

2019

417,768

International migrants

2019

Overview

(July 2015) An important transit and destination country, Costa Rica began systemically applying immigration detention in the 1990s in response to migratory pressures from neighboring Nicaragua. The country currently operates two dedicated detention facilities, which have been criticised by national rights bodies for having inadequate sanitary conditions.

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

27 July 2020

Centro de Aprehensión Temporal para Extranjeros en Condición Irregular, in San José, (
Centro de Aprehensión Temporal para Extranjeros en Condición Irregular, in San José, ("Centro de Aprehensión Temporal para Extranjeros en Condición Irregular (CATECI) (previously Centro de Aseguramiento para Extranjeros en Transito)," Global Detention Project, https://www.globaldetentionproject.org/countries/americas/costa-rica/detention-centres/120/centro-de-aprehension-temporal-para-extranjeros-en-condicion-irregular-cateci-previously-centro-de-aseguramiento-para-extranjeros-en-transito)

Responding to the Global Detention Project’s Covid-19 survey, Costa Rica’s immigration authority (Dirección General de Migración y Extranjería) reported that during the Covid-19 crisis, immigration police (Dirección de la Policía Profesional de Migración) put in place distinct measures for non-citizens apprehended for administrative reasons. Instead of extending detention measures during the pandemic, non-citizens were required to periodically report to police stations. Costa Rica’s immigration authority reported that the immigration police orders the administrative apprehension of a non-citizens in cases where their record demonstrates a risk for security and public order, in accordance with the Law on Migration and Aliens N°8764 (Ley General de Migración y Extranjería número 8764), or if it considers that the person will seek to evade a deportation order.

After the declaration of the state of emergency on 16 March, the immigration authority issued various protocols and guidelines endorsed by the Ministry of Health for the prevention and care of Covid-19 cases, adapting spaces for isolation and training police personnel. Also, protocols seeking to prevent outbreaks of the disease were implemented, including the use of hygiene products such as disinfectants, soap, deep cleaning, and taking non-citizens’ temperature systematically. The Dirección General de Migración y Extranjería also reported that the immigration detention centre in San José, Centro de Aprehensión Regional Central de la Policía Profesional de Migración, where non-citizens who have committed administrative offences or those that are to be deported are held, was staffed with healthcare professionals and if persons had any Covid-19 symptoms, they were transferred to the closest health centre.

Regarding deportations, the immigration authority indicated that these were still being conducted despite the pandemic, albeit only by land and consequently, only to Nicaragua and Panama, where authorities continued receiving their nationals. Deportations to other countries have been temporarily suspended while arrangements are being made through diplomatic channels with other countries’ authorities such as El Salvador, Honduras, and Colombia.

Moreover, while the immigration authority’s offices were temporarily closed from 17 March to 17 May 2020, and closure has since been extended, non-citizens that arrive in Costa Rica may nonetheless apply for asylum at a border post. As soon as the person states that they wish to apply for international protection, staff from the Refuge Unit are dispatched to the relevant border post to carry out the process. The applicant then undergoes the same process as any other would, but in an expedited manner. Through an agreement with UNHCR, the applicant is accommodated in a hotel in the area, while the procedure for determining refugee status is carried out.


06 June 2020

Handcuffed Migrant Being Escorted by Immigration Police, (AFP,
Handcuffed Migrant Being Escorted by Immigration Police, (AFP, "Costa Rica Aísla Centro de Detención de Migrantes por Brote de COVID-19," 5 May 2020, https://www.informa-tico.com/5-05-2020/costa-rica-aisla-centro-detencion-migrantes-brote-covid-19)

Responding to the Global Detention Project’s Covid-19 Survey, the UN Human Rights regional office in Panama (ROCA) reported on 1 June that Costa Rica has not established a moratorium on new immigration detention orders and that the country is not contemplating the measure. ROCA also explained that no immigration detainees have been released and that there are no “alternatives to detention” programmes employed in the country. ROCA reported that people are tested for Covid-19 in immigration detention centres.

Regarding expulsions, the UN office said that while these have been temporarily suspended, there is no specific measure prohibiting them in the country.

On 14 May, news reports indicated that four positive cases of Covid-19 had been detected on people returning from Spain, as well as nine others in an immigration detention centre in the country. From 5 May, Costa Rica closed its borders to non-citizens, with the exception of residents and cargo transport personnel. In total, 23 foreign cargo transports have been refused entry into the country.

On 5 May, Costa Rica placed in isolation one of its main immigration detention centres after 12 cases of Covid-19 were discovered within the facility. News reports indicated that the 12 confirmed cases had been contaminated by two persons detained for having entered the country irregularly that were carrying the disease. Authorities did not specify their nationality.

As regards the country’s prisons, no cases of Covid-19 have been reported on part of staff and prisoners.


Last updated: July 2015

Costa Rica Immigration Detention Profile

    Costa Rica is a transit country for migrants travelling to the United States and Canada as well as a destination country. In 2013 the migrant population numbered 419,600. This represented 8.6 percent of the country’s total population, the second highest ratio in Latin America, behind Belize (15.3 percent).[1] Approximately 75 percent of non-citizens residing in Costa Rica are from Nicaragua,[2] and the country’s detention practices have historically been linked to the effort to stem Nicaraguan migration.[3]

    Based on reports by human rights groups, it appears that detention in Costa Rica began to emerge as a coherent policy apparatus in the late 1990s as large numbers of Nicaraguans began crossing into the country to work as undocumented labourers in farms. According to a 2002 report by the Central American Human Rights Commission (Codehuca), “In June 2000 the General Immigration and Naturalisation Department … processed approximately 155,000 (regularization) requests of which more than 97% were Nicaraguan immigrants. … The large number of immigrants urged the authorities to implement emergency means to control the undocumented immigration, like the incorporation of a hostel for undocumented immigrants in San José in November 1999 and the implementation of temporary retention centres in the northern part of the country. These are meant to facilitate the process of rejection as established in Costa Rican legislation.”[4]

    In its 2009 Migration Law (Ley General de Migración y Extranjería N° 8764), Costa Rica formalized provisions concerning deportation and detention. In 2011 the government issued a detailed Migration Control Regulation (Reglamento de Control Migratorio, Decreto Ejecutivo N° 36769), which interprets and clarifies the Migration Law.

    Article 5 of the Migration Control Regulation defines administrative immigration detention as a restriction of liberty ordered by the Directorate General of Migration (Dirección General de Migración y Extranjería) for a foreigner who has entered or remained in the country in irregular manner. It states that the period of detention shall be necessary to carry out the administrative procedure of expulsion or regularization of the person’s migratory status.

    Article 31(5) of the Migration Law provides the legal framework and establishes basic procedures for carrying out “administrative detention.” According to this article, migration police (Policía Profesional de Migración) may detain a migrant for up to 24 hours to verify his or her migratory status. In “special circumstances” this can be extended based on a decision made by the director of the Directorate General of Migration (Migration Law, article 31(5)(a); Migration Control Regulation, article 20). The Migration Law further provides that if the “migratory infraction” (infracción migratoria) is confirmed and less coercive measures are dismissed, the Directorate General of Migration shall order deportation proceedings (Migration Law, article 31(5)(a)). Once the consulate of the migrant’s country of origin identifies the person, immigration detention shall not exceed 30 days during which deportation should be carried out. Yet, this period can be extended in “exceptional circumstances,” when justified by the Directorate General of Migration (Migration Law, article 31(5)(b)). The maximum period of detention is thus not set out in the legislation. According to some reports, detention can last longer than six months.[5]

    Pursuant to article 31(7) of the Migration Law anyone subject to migration proceedings is to be informed of the reasons for his apprehension and have the right to consular assistance, access to a legal adviser paid by him, and linguistic assistance. Under article 194 of the Migration Law, detainees have the right to appeal detention orders to the Migration Administrative Tribunal (Tribunal Administrativo Migratorio) within three days following issuance of an order. The tribunal does not automatically review the legality of detention. Thus, if a detainee does not make an appeal, immigration detention is not reviewed.[6]

    According to the Migration Law, detention is an exceptional measure to be used only when less coercive measures are deemed inadequate for the particular case (Migration Law, article 31(5)). It is difficult to assess how often less coercive measures are employed because authorities do not provide any detention-related statistics.[7] The Migration Law lists four non-custodial measures: regular reporting to authorities, bail, deposit of documents, and home detention (Migration Law, article 211). According to the Centro Internacional De Derechos Humanos de Personas Migrantes (CIDEHUM), bail and home detention are only very rarely used.[8]

    According to the Migration Control Regulation, the migration police may not keep children in custody. Rather, it is the National Child Welfare Agency (Patronato Nacional de la Infancia) who is charged with their care (Migration Control Regulation, article 20).

    In 2013, 1,150 people sought asylum in Costa Rica; 1,170 in 2012.[9] Asylum seekers are generally not detained. They are issued a document stating their status, which protects them from immigration detention.[10] If administrative or penal proceedings related to undocumented stay of an asylum seeker are on-going, they are to be suspended until the person’s asylum application is assessed (Refugees Regulation, article 137).

    The country operates one dedicated long-term immigration detention facility, the Centro de Aprehensión Temporal para Extranjeros en Condición Irregular (CATECI), located in the Hatillo neighborhood of San José (prior to the adoption of the Migration Law the centre was known as the Centro de Aseguramiento para Extranjeros en Transito).[11] The Directorate General of Migration has a custodial authority over the detainees and it manages the centre, jointly with the migration police. The CATECI has a capacity of 50 and confines on average 20 migrants at a time.[12] Men and women are kept separately.[13]

    The Migration Law provides that the detainees must be kept in conditions that ensure their dignity and take into account specificities related to gender, age, and disability (Migration Law, article 31(5)(c)). However, during a visit in 2013, the Ombudsman and the National Preventive Mechanism noted that the centre did not provide adequate separation of different categories of detainees (according to the country of origin or vulnerability), that the infrastructure was old, and that sanitary conditions were inadequate.[14] In 2014, the Directorate General of Migration presented its plans to open a new detention centre to replace the CATECI.[15]

    There is also a short-term detention facility at the Juan Santamaria Airport, located outside San José. It confines people who have attempted to enter the country in an irregular way while their status is verified or they have been removal with assistance from airlines.[16]

    Before opening the CATECI in August 2006 migrants were detained in 5th police station in San José (known as the “Quinta Comisaría”).[17] According to the 2002 Codehuca report:

    “The detention centre is located in the premises of the ‘Quinta Comisaría’ in San José. It has a capacity of 80 persons, according to the Chief of the Immigration Police, Allen Calderón. Occasionally, the detained persons have to sleep on the floor. The centre does not have adequate hygienic conditions; the showers do not have doors and there are only two lavatories. The recreation area is very small, there is no place to eat and there is no direct light. The interior of the centre smells awfully. Families or friends of the detained persons should provide the necessary personal hygienic products. There is no public phone in the centre and the immigrants are not allowed to use the phone in the office to call their families or friends. Staff of the Ministry of Health has visited the detention centre few times, because it was informed of the bad hygienic conditions of the centre. The Ministry of Health was supposed to write a report of recommendations, however, the guards are still waiting for this report, which has not arrived yet. The Ombudsman Human Rights Office noted that occasionally underaged immigrants are detained in the ‘Quinta Comisaría,’ which is a severe violation of the Convention of Child Rights and Costa Rican law.”[18]

     

    [1] UN Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UNDESA). 2013. International Migration 2013 Wall Chart. http://www.un.org/en/development/desa/population/publications/migration/migration-wallchart-2013.shtml.

    [2] International Organization for Migration (IOM). Website. “Costa Rica: Migration Trends.” http://costarica.iom.int/en/costa_rica/migration_trends_in_the_mission/ (16 June 2015).

    [3] Central American Human Rights Commission (CODEHUCA). 2002. “SITUATION OF NICARAGUAN IMMIGRANTS IN COSTA RICA – CERD 2002.” Available at https://www.fidh.org/IMG/pdf/costarica2002cerd.pdf.

    [4] Central American Human Rights Commission (CODEHUCA). 2002. “SITUATION OF NICARAGUAN IMMIGRANTS IN COSTA RICA – CERD 2002.” Available at https://www.fidh.org/IMG/pdf/costarica2002cerd.pdf.

    [5] International Detention Coalition (IDC). 2014. INFORME REGIONAL DETENCIÓN MIGRATORIA Y ALTERNATIVAS A LA DETENCIÓN EN LAS AMÉRICAS. October 2014.

    [6] Richard, Gabriela (Centro Internacional de Derechos Humanos de Personas Migrantes CIDEHUM). 2014. Global Detention Project Questionnaire: Costa Rica. 29 September 2014.

    [7] Richard, Gabriela (Centro Internacional de Derechos Humanos de Personas Migrantes CIDEHUM). 2014. Global Detention Project Questionnaire: Costa Rica. 29 September 2014.

    [8] Richard, Gabriela (Centro Internacional de Derechos Humanos de Personas Migrantes CIDEHUM). 2014. Global Detention Project Questionnaire: Costa Rica. 29 September 2014.

    [9] UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). UNHCR Statistical Yearbook 2013. 2014. www.unhcr.org/54cf9bd69.html. UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR). UNHCR Statistical Yearbook 2012. 2013. http://www.unhcr.org/52a7213b9.html.

    [10] Richard, Gabriela (Centro Internacional de Derechos Humanos de Personas Migrantes CIDEHUM). 2014. Global Detention Project Questionnaire: Costa Rica. 29 September 2014.

    [11] Guerrero Segura, Efraín (UHCR Costa Rica). 2015. Email correspondence with Izabella Majcher (Global Detention Project). June 2015.

    [12] Dirección General de Migración y Extranjería. 2014. Proyecto: Creación del Nuevo CATECI. Guerrero Segura, Efraín (UHCR Costa Rica). 2015. Email correspondence with Izabella Majcher (Global Detention Project). June 2015.

    [13] Richard, Gabriela (Centro Internacional de Derechos Humanos de Personas Migrantes CIDEHUM). 2014. Global Detention Project Questionnaire: Costa Rica. 29 September 2014.

    [14] Mecanismo Nacional de Prevención de la Tortura and Defensoría de los Habitantes de la República. 2014. Informe Anual de Labores 2013. http://www.ohchr.org/Documents/HRBodies/OPCAT/NPM/CostaRica2013.pdf.

    [15] Dirección General de Migración y Extranjería. 2014. Proyecto: Creación del Nuevo CATECI.

    [16] Richard, Gabriela (Centro Internacional de Derechos Humanos de Personas Migrantes CIDEHUM). 2015. Email correspondence with Izabella Majcher (Global Detention Project). June 2015.

    [17] ACNUR/Dirección General de Migración y Extranjería. 2007. DONACION DE ACNUR MEJORARÁ CONDICIONES DE EXTRANJEROS DETENIDOS EN CENTRO DE APREHENCION EN HATILLO. Comunicado de Prensa Conjunto. 29 May 2007.

    [18] Central American Human Rights Commission (CODEHUCA). 2002. “SITUATION OF NICARAGUAN IMMIGRANTS IN COSTA RICA – CERD 2002.” Available at https://www.fidh.org/IMG/pdf/costarica2002cerd.pdf.

    ENFORCEMENT DATA

    Total Migration Detainees: Flow + Stock (year)
    Not Available
    2019
    Total Number of Children Placed in Immigration Detention (Year)
    Not Available
    2017
    Number of dedicated medium-term immigration detention centres
    0
    2014
    Number of immigration offices
    0
    2014
    Immigration Detention Capacity (Specialised Immigration Facilities Only)
    50
    2014
    Number of Transit/Border Detention Facilities
    1
    2015
    Number of Dedicated Immigration Detention Centres
    1
    2014
    Number of Criminal Facilities Used for Immigration Detention
    0
    2014
    Estimated Number of Ad Hoc/Unofficial Facilities
    0
    2014
    Criminal Prison Population (Year)
    17,440
    2014
    14,963
    2012
    12,110
    2010
    9,211
    2007
    8,890
    2004
    7,649
    2001
    6,004
    1998
    3,490
    1995
    3,443
    1992
    Percentage of Foreign Prisoners (Year)
    14.6
    2013
    14.2
    2006
    Prison Population Rate (per 100,000 of National Population)
    352
    2014
    314
    2012
    259
    2010
    207
    2007
    209
    2004
    191
    2001
    160
    1998
    100
    1995
    107
    1992

    POPULATION DATA

    Population (Year)
    5,100,000
    2020
    4,808,000
    2015
    4,800,000
    2012
    International Migrants (Year)
    417,768
    2019
    421,700
    2015
    419,600
    2013
    International Migrants as Percentage of Population (Year)
    8.8
    2015
    8.6
    2013
    Refugees (Year)
    6,204
    2019
    4,547
    2018
    4,493
    2017
    4,152
    2016
    3,616
    2015
    20,744
    2014
    Ratio of Refugees Per 1000 Inhabitants (Year)
    0.86
    2016
    4.36
    2014
    4.38
    2012
    New Asylum Applications (Year)
    60,101
    2019
    5,834
    2016
    1,373
    2014
    1,170
    2012
    Refugee Recognition Rate (Year)
    15.1
    2014
    Stateless Persons (Year)
    82
    2018
    71
    2017
    127
    2016
    2,613
    2015
    0
    2014

    SOCIO-ECONOMIC DATA & POLLS

    Gross Domestic Product per Capita (in USD)
    10,415
    2014
    10,185
    2013
    Remittances to the Country
    611
    2015
    585
    2011
    Remittances From the Country
    271
    2010
    Unemployment Rate
    2014
    Net Official Development Assistance (ODA) (in Millions USD)
    53.5
    2014
    Human Development Index Ranking (UNDP)
    69 (High)
    2015
    68 (High)
    2014

    B. Attitudes and Perceptions

    MIGRATION-RELATED DETENTION

    LEGAL & REGULATORY FRAMEWORK

    Do Migration Detainees Have Constitutional Guarantees?
    Yes (Political Constitution of the Republic of Costa Rica, article 37) 1949 1949
    1949
    Detention-Related Legislation
    Reglamento de Personas Refugiadas Nº 36831-G (2011)
    2011
    Ley General de Migración y Extranjería N° 8764 (2009)
    2009
    Regulations, Standards, Guidelines
    Reglamento de Control Migratorio (Decreto Ejecutivo N° 36769) (2011)
    2011
    Manual Administrativo y de procedimientos de los centros de Aprehensión temporal para extranjeros en condiciones irregulares (2008)
    2008

    GROUNDS FOR MIGRATION-RELATED DETENTION

    Immigration-Status-Related Grounds
    Detention for unauthorised entry or stay
    2015
    Detention to effect removal
    2015
    Children & Other Vulnerable Groups
    Accompanied minors (Prohibited)
    2015
    Unaccompanied minors (Prohibited) No
    2015
    Asylum seekers No
    2014
    Stateless persons (Not mentioned)
    2014
    Pregnant women (Not mentioned)
    2014
    Elderly (Not mentioned)
    2014
    Persons with disabilities (Not mentioned)
    2014
    Victims of trafficking (Not mentioned)
    2014
    Refugees No
    2014

    LENGTH OF MIGRATION-RELATED DETENTION

    Maximum Length of Administrative Immigration Detention
    Yes
    2014
    Maximum Length in Custody Prior to Detention Order
    Number of Days: 1
    2014

    MIGRATION-RELATED DETENTION INSTITUTIONS

    Custodial Authorities
    Direccion General de Migracion y Extranjeria (Ministerio de Gobernacion y Policia) Interior or Home Affairs
    2015
    Direccion General de Migracion y Extranjeria (Ministerio de Gobernacion y Policia) Interior or Home Affairs
    2014
    Direccion General de Migracion y Extranjeria (Ministerio de Gobernacion) Interior or Home Affairs
    2007
    Apprehending Authorities
    Policía Profesional de Migración
    2015
    Detention Facility Management
    Policía de migración (Governmental)
    2015
    Private company (Private For-Profit)
    2015
    Dirección General de Migración y Extranjería and Policía Profesional de Migracion (Governmental)
    2014
    Dirección General de Migración y Extranjería and Policía Profesional (Governmental)
    2014
    Direccion General de Migracion y Extrajeria/Policia de Migracion y Extranjeria (Governmental)
    2007
    Direccion General de Migracion y Extrajeria (Governmental)
    2007
    Formally Designated Detention Estate?
    Yes (Dedicated immigration detention facilities)
    2015
    Types of Detention Facilities Used in Practice
    Yes Yes
    2015

    PROCEDURAL STANDARDS & SAFEGUARDS

    Procedural Standards
    Right to appeal the lawfulness of detention (Yes)
    2015
    Information to detainees (Yes)
    2015
    Access to consular assistance (Yes) Yes
    2015
    Right to legal counsel (Yes)
    2015
    Access to free interpretation services (Yes) Yes
    2015
    Access to asylum procedures (Yes)
    2015
    Compensation for unlawful detention No
    2014
    Independent review of detention (No) No
    2014
    Types of Non-Custodial Measures (ATDs) Provided in Law
    Supervised release and/or reporting (Yes) infrequently
    2015
    Registration (deposit of documents) (Yes) infrequently
    2015
    Release on bail (Yes) No
    2014
    Home detention (curfew) (Yes) No
    2014

    DETENTION MONITORS

    Types of Authorised Detention Monitoring Institutions
    Asociación de Consultores y Asesores Internacionales (ACAI) (Non-Governmental Organizations (NGO))
    2014
    UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) (International or Regional Bodies (IRBs))
    2014
    Defensoría de los Habitantes de Costa Rica (Ombudsman) (National Human Rights Institution (or Ombudsperson) (NHRI))
    2014
    Mecanismo Nacional de Prevención contra la Tortura (OPCAT National Preventive Mechanism (NPM))
    2014
    Names of Non-Governmental Organisations (NGOs) that Carry Out Detention Monitoring Visits
    Yes
    2014
    Names of International Monitoring Bodies that Carry Out Detention Monitoring Visits
    Yes
    2014

    TRANSPARENCY

    READMISSION/RETURN/EXTRADITION AGREEMENTS

    COVID-19

    HEALTH CARE

    COVID-19 DATA

    INTERNATIONAL TREATIES

    International Treaties Ratified
    Ratification Year
    Observation Date
    OP ICESCR, Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
    2014
    2014
    OP CRC Communications Procedure
    2014
    2014
    ICPED, International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance
    2012
    2012
    OPCRPD, Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
    2008
    2008
    CRPD, Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities
    2008
    2008
    OPCAT, Optional Protocol to the Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment
    2005
    2005
    CTOCTP, Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children
    2003
    2003
    CTOCSP, Protocol against the Smuggling of Migrants by Land, Sea and Air, supplementing the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime
    2003
    2003
    CAT, Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment
    1993
    1993
    CRC, Convention on the Rights of the Child
    1990
    1990
    CEDAW, Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women
    1986
    1986
    CRSR, Geneva Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees
    1978
    1978
    PCRSR, Protocol to the Geneva Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees
    1978
    1978
    CRSSP, Convention Relating to the Status of Stateless Persons
    1977
    1977
    ICCPR, International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights
    1968
    1968
    ICESCR, International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
    1968
    1968
    ICERD, International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination
    1967
    1967
    VCCR, Vienna Convention on Consular Relations
    1966
    1966
    Ratio of relevant international treaties ratified
    Ratio: 18/19
    Individual Complaints Procedures
    Acceptance Year
    CRPD, Optional Protocol to o the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities 2015
    2015
    ICESCR, Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights, 2008 2014
    2014
    CRC, [Third] Optional Protocol to the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child establishing a communications procedure, 2011 2014
    2014
    CAT, declaration under article 22 of the Convention 2002
    2002
    CEDAW, Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, 1999 2001
    2001
    ICERD, declaration under article 14 of the Convention 1974
    1974
    ICCPR, First Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, 1966 1968
    1968
    Ratio of Complaints Procedures Accepted
    Observation Date
    7/8
    7/8
    Relevant Recommendations Issued by Treaty Bodies
    Recommendation Year
    Observation Date
    Human Rights Committee 30. The State party should step up efforts to improve living conditions at migrant detention centres, including with regard to appropriate sanitation and health services, with a view to fully complying with the provisions of article 10. The State should guarantee that migrants are held in administrative detention only when justified as a reasonable, necessary and proportionate measure, guaranteeing as well that such detention is used only as a measure of last resort and for the shortest time possible. 2016
    2016
    2018
    Committee against Torture §10 The State party should ensure that legislation provides for alternatives to custody for migrants. The State party should also set a maximum legal period for detention pending deportation, which should in no circumstances be indefinite. The Committee invites the State party to continue its efforts to improve detention conditions for all immigrants, in cases where administrative detention is absolutely necessary, in accordance with the Body of Principles for the Protection of All Persons under Any Form of Detention or Imprisonment and the Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners. The Committee recommends the adoption of protocols and the provision of proper training for border officials and personnel working in centres for the administrative detention of aliens for the identification of victims of trafficking and others who are entitled to international protection. 2008
    2008
    2008
    Human Rights Committee §9 The State party should take steps to end overcrowding in detention centres, including those administered by the migration authorities, and to ensure compliance with the requirements of article 10. In particular, the State party should take into consideration the Standard Minimum Rules for the Treatment of Prisoners. 2007
    2007
    2007
    Committee on the Rights of the Child § 43. "The Committee commends the State party ’ s adoption of the Comprehensive Migration Policy for the period 2020–2023 and its protocols providing for the identification and protection of migrant children. With reference to joint general comments No. 3 and No. 4 (2017) of the Committee on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families/No. 22 and No. 23 (2017) of the Committee on the Rights of the Child on the human rights of children in the context of international migration, the Committee recommends that the State party: (a) Ensure that public authorities in charge of asylum procedures comply with the right of the child to have his or her best interests taken as a primary consideration in all decisions related to the transfer of any asylum-seeking or refugee children from the State party; (b) Ensure comprehensive referral and case management frameworks for services to children, including with regard to education, health, the police and the justice sector, including the provision of free legal aid, for unaccompanied and separated children, and appropriate conditions in referral centres, including in temporary care centres for migrants; (c) Ensure that the private and public schools and universities facilitate access to education for asylum-seeking, refugee and migrant children, in line with legislation, and that lack of documents is not an obstacle or cause of rejection at school; (d) Expedite all procedures involving unaccompanied, asylum-seeking and refugee children, and ensure that these procedures fully comply with the Convention." 2020
    2020
    Committee on the Rights of the Child § 43. The State party: (a) Ensure that public authorities in charge of asylum procedures comply with the right of the child to have his or her best interests taken as a primary consideration in all decisions related to the transfer of any asylum-seeking or refugee children from the State party; (b) Ensure comprehensive referral and case management frameworks for services to children, including with regard to education, health, the police and the justice sector, including the provision of free legal aid, for unaccompanied and separated children, and appropriate conditions in referral centres, including in temporary care centres for migrants; (c) Ensure that the private and public schools and universities facilitate access to education for asylum-seeking, refugee and migrant children, in line with legislation, and that lack of documents is not an obstacle or cause of rejection at school; (d) Expedite all procedures involving unaccompanied, asylum-seeking and refugee children, and ensure that these procedures fully comply with the Convention. 2020
    2020

    NON-TREATY-BASED INTERNATIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS MECHANISMS

    Relevant Recommendations from the UN Universal Periodic Review
    Observation Date
    Yes 2010
    2017
    Yes 2019
    Yes 2014

    REGIONAL HUMAN RIGHTS MECHANISMS

    Regional Legal Instruments
    Year of Ratification (Treaty) / Transposed (Directive) / Adoption (Regulation)
    Observation Date
    ACHR, American Convention on Human Rights 1970
    1970
    IACPPT, Inter-American Convention to Prevent and Punish Torture 1999
    1999
    APACHR, Additional Protocol to the American Convention on Human Rights in the Area of Economic, Social and Cultural Rights 1999
    1999
    CBDP, Inter-American Convention on the Prevention, Punishment and Eradication of Violence against Women (Convention of Belem do Para) 1995
    1995
    IACFDP, Inter-American convention on Forced Disappearance of Persons 1996
    1996

    GOVERNANCE SYSTEM

    Legal Tradition(s)
    Civil law
    Federal or Centralised Governing System
    Centralized system
    2015
    Centralised or Decentralised Immigration Authority
    Centralized immigration authority
    2015

    DETENTION COSTS

    OUTSOURCING

    FOREIGN SOURCES OF FUNDING FOR DETENTION OPERATIONS