Peru

Detains migrants or asylum seekers?

Yes

Has laws regulating migration-related detention?

Yes

Refugees

6,751

2023

Asylum Applications

538,975

2023

International Migrants

1,224,519

2020

Population

34,400,000

2023

Overview

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

22 July 2020 – Peru

Peru’s Ombudsman’s office (Defensoría del Pueblo), responding to the Global Detention Project’s Covid-19 survey, stated that to their knowledge, no one had been detained for migration reasons during the pandemic. They also noted that there is no formal immigration detention estate in the country. After the declaration of the state of emergency in the country, […]

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Police and Armed Forces Standing in the Street, (Getty Images,

26 June 2020 – Peru

The Covid-19 crisis has had a dramatic impact on Peru’s economic and social situation. As of 25 May 2020, Peru had recorded more than 260,000 cases and 8,586 deaths related to the disease, making it the Latin American country with most cases and deaths from Covid-19 after Brazil. A report by the World Bank Group […]

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IOM Worker Handing Food Parcels to Migrants, (IOM,
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)
82,898
2017
45,464
2010
39,684
2007
31,311
2004
26,968
2001
26,059
1998
20,899
1995
15,718
1992
Percentage of Foreign Prisoners (Year)
2.1
2017
Prison Population Rate (per 100,000 of National Population)
260
2017
154
2010
139
2007
114
2004
102
2001
103
1998
87
1995
69
1992

POPULATION DATA

Population (Year)
34,400,000
2023
33,000,000
2020
International Migrants (Year)
1,224,519
2020
782,169
2019
International Migrants as Percentage of Population (Year)
3.71
2020
Refugees (Year)
6,751
2023
5,790
2021
4,272
2020
2,850
2019
2,529
2018
1,817
2017
1,590
2016
1,488
2015
1,303
2014
Ratio of Refugees Per 1000 Inhabitants (Year)
0.05
2016
Asylum Applications (Year)
538,975
2023
259,833
2019
4,328
2016
Stateless Persons (Year)
0
2022
0
2016

SOCIO-ECONOMIC DATA & POLLS

Pew Global Attitudes Poll on Immigration
51
2013

LEGAL & REGULATORY FRAMEWORK

Does the Country Detain People for Migration, Asylum, or Citizenship Reasons?
Yes
2023
Does the Country Have Specific Laws that Provide for Migration-Related Detention?
Yes
2024
Legal Tradition(s)
Civil law
2017

GROUNDS FOR DETENTION

Children & Other Vulnerable Groups
Unaccompanied minors No
2020

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
OP CRC Communications Procedure
2016
2018
CRSSP, Convention Relating to the Status of Stateless Persons
2014
2014
ICPED, International Convention for the Protection of All Persons from Enforced Disappearance
2012
2012
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
2006
2006
ICRMW, International Convention on the Protection of the Rights of All Migrant Workers and Members of Their Families
2005
2005
CTOCTP, Protocol to Prevent, Suppress and Punish Trafficking in Persons, Especially Women and Children
2002
2002
CTOCSP, Protocol against the Smuggling of Migrants by Land, Sea and Air, supplementing the United Nations Convention against Transnational Organized Crime
2002
2002
CRC, Convention on the Rights of the Child
1990
1990
CAT, Convention against Torture and Other Cruel, Inhuman or Degrading Treatment or Punishment
1988
1988
PCRSR, Protocol to the Geneva Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees
1983
1983
CEDAW, Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women
1982
1982
VCCR, Vienna Convention on Consular Relations
1978
1978
ICESCR, International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights
1978
1978
ICCPR, International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights
1978
1978
ICERD, International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination
1971
1971
CRSR, Geneva Convention Relating to the Status of Refugees
1964
1964
Ratio of relevant international treaties ratified
Ratio: 17/19
Individual Complaints Procedures
Acceptance Year
CRPD, Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities 2008
2008
CEDAW, Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Elimination of Discrimination against Women, 1999 2001
2001
CAT, declaration under article 22 of the Convention 1988
1988
ICERD, declaration under article 14 of the Convention 1984
1984
ICCPR, First Optional Protocol to the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights, 1966 1980
1980
Ratio of Complaints Procedures Accepted
Observation Date
5/9
5/9
Relevant Recommendations or Observations Issued by Treaty Bodies
Recommendation Year
Observation Date
Committee on Migrant Workers "§31. take the necessary measures to guarantee that detention of migrant workers in an irregular situation is a measure of last resort and that detention in all circumstances is conducted in accordance with article 16 and article 17, paragraph 2, of the convention, and also with the committee’s general comment no. 2 on the rights of migrant workers in an irregular situation and members of their families. it also recommends that the state party should provide detailed information on this issue in its next periodic report, including the information mentioned in the previous paragraph." 2015
2015

> UN Special Procedures

Visits by Special Procedures of the UN Human Rights Council
Year of Visit
Observation Date
Special Rapporteur on contemporary forms of slavery 2011
2011
2015
Special Rapporteur on the human rights of migrants 2004
2004
2015
Special Rapporteur on the right of everyone to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of physical and mental health 2004
2004
2015
Working Group on arbitrary detention 1998
1998
2015

> UN Universal Periodic Review

Relevant Recommendations or Observations from the UN Universal Periodic Review
Observation Date
No 2008
2017
No 2012

> 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
IACPPT, Inter-American Convention to Prevent and Punish Torture 1990
1990
IACFDP, Inter-American convention on Forced Disappearance of Persons 2002
2002
CBDP, Inter-American Convention on the Prevention, Punishment and Eradication of Violence against Women (Convention of Belem do Para) 1996
1996
APACHR, Additional Protocol to the American Convention on Human Rights in the Area of Economic, Social and Cultural Rights 1995
1995
ACHR, American Convention on Human Rights 1978
1978

HEALTH CARE PROVISION

HEALTH IMPACTS

COVID-19

Country Updates
Peru’s Ombudsman’s office (Defensoría del Pueblo), responding to the Global Detention Project’s Covid-19 survey, stated that to their knowledge, no one had been detained for migration reasons during the pandemic. They also noted that there is no formal immigration detention estate in the country. After the declaration of the state of emergency in the country, Peru’s immigration authority (Superintendencia Nacional de Migraciones) suspended, for a duration of 15 days, administrative sanctions related to overstaying visas and residence permits and also for unauthorised entry onto the territory, through the Superintendency Resolution No. 100-2020. Consequently, deportations for these immigration offences were also suspended. The measure was subsequently extended by Superintendency Resolution No. 107-2020 until the end of the state of emergency. However, on 9 May 2020, Peru’s immigration authority voided the suspension through Superintendency Resolution No. 123-2020. According to the explanatory memorandum, this decision was made to allow the authority to “help mitigate actions affecting public order, national security, or the security of Peru’s citizens, by non-citizens in the country, especially during the state of emergency.” The Ombudsman stated that there is no official information on the number of deportation orders issued by the country’s immigration authority since the lifting of the suspension of administrative sanctions. The only case that was reported through a press release was that of two Ecuadorian citizens who entered Peruvian territory irregularly through a plane that crashed in Tumbes (a border city between Ecuador and Peru), and were then expelled to Ecuador on 10 June. While no new immigration or asylum policies have been adopted, certain measures to mitigate the impact of Covid-19 have affected the country’s immigration management strategies and the operation of Peru’s asylum system. As regards immigration management, Peru closed its borders on 16 March through Supreme Decree No. 044-2020-PCM, and with it, the suspension of land, aerial, and maritime transport. This measure means that, save for exceptional cases such as humanitarian flights between countries, the entry or exit of people (nationals and non-nationals) to and from the country is not permitted. In addition to the clear restrictions that this implies for the freedom of movement of migrants, the Ombudsman’s office identified that it could affect the right to seek asylum. Between 16 March and 21 June, no measures were reportedly taken by the government to guarantee access to the territory for asylum seekers. People who had entered the country shortly before the closure of borders, or who entered the country irregularly during the state of emergency, said that they did not know where to go due to the closure of national institutions. From 22 June, the Special Commission for Refugees (Comisión Especial para los Refugiados or CEPR), the body in charge of the operation of the Peruvian asylum system, established an online platform for people to be able to conduct the following procedures: Apply for asylum; apply for the renewal of work authorisations for asylum seekers; filing appeals for reconsideration or appeal against a negative asylum decision; and applying for family reunification in cases of people with refugee status. The CEPR has announced that they are working to move all procedures they are in charge of to online platforms as face-to-face meetings cannot be resumed at the moment. It is not yet known whether this system has had positive or negative effects upon the determination of refugee status. However, the Ombudsman is concerned that barriers to accessing the asylum system may arise due to the lack of access of asylum seekers to smartphones, laptops, computers, or the internet as well as the lack of knowledge on how to properly fill out the relevant applications.
The Covid-19 crisis has had a dramatic impact on Peru’s economic and social situation. As of 25 May 2020, Peru had recorded more than 260,000 cases and 8,586 deaths related to the disease, making it the Latin American country with most cases and deaths from Covid-19 after Brazil. A report by the World Bank Group reported that Venezuelan migrants residing in Peru (around 830,000) are particularly at risk from Covid-19 due to several factors, including inadequate access to health and social services as well as loss of employment. The report stated that when falling ill, only 33 percent of Venezuelan migrants (compared to 48 percent of Peruvians) sought medical care in a health centre or a doctor’s office, mostly due to a lack of financial resources and insurance coverage. Many Venezuelan migrants in Peru work in the informal sector and due to the Covid-19 crisis have lost their employment and income, leaving many in a situation of extreme poverty. UN agencies have distributed food parcels and water, provided by the private sector, to some 5,000 families in vulnerable situations. This was intended to cover essential needs during the sanitary emergency to avoid people going out to buy food. According to the IOM director in Peru, “more than 80% of the Venezuelan population in Peru works in the informal sector and that people live off daily income. After 25 days of compulsory social isolation, these persons are in great need of assistance.” Migrants and refugees are being accommodated in overpopulated shelters. “Accion contra el Hambre” has been distributing food, water, and hygiene kits across the shelters as well as providing support to improve their sanitation infrastructure and hygiene conditions. The organisation has reported that Venezuelan migrants are suffering from increased xenophobia and that this vulnerable population has been left out of subsidy plans during the pandemic. Certain measures have been taken to reduce the spread of Covid-19 within penal institutions. Peruvian authorities announced the creation of 60 temporary facilities to treat prisoners suffering from Covid-19 on 20 April and thousands of prisoners have been released since April. On 19 May, 933 prisoners were released, most of whom were at least 60 years old and had been sentenced for minor offences. The following day, the Minister of Justice announced that they expect to release approximately 10,000 prisoners on remand and at least 2,500 convicted offenders. A riot took place on 27 April at the Miguel Castro Castro prison in Lima, which is severely overpopulated. Although it has a capacity of only 1,140 places, there are reportedly 5,500 prisoners. Three prisoners were killed following an operation led by the police and prison guards intended to regain control of the prison. As of 20 May, 2,800 members of staff (out of 11,000) and 3,212 prisoners (out of 96,870) were tested for the disease and 674 employees and 1,223 prisoners tested positive.
Did the country release immigration detainees as a result of the pandemic?
Unknown
2021
Did the country use legal "alternatives to detention" as part of pandemic detention releases?
Unknown
2021
Did the country Temporarily Cease or Restrict Issuing Detention Orders?
Yes
2020
Did the Country Adopt These Pandemic-Related Measures for People in Immigration Detention?
Unknown (Unknown) Unknown Unknown Unknown
2021
Did the Country Lock-Down Previously "Open" Reception Facilities, Shelters, Refugee Camps, or Other Forms of Accommodation for Migrant Workers or Other Non-Citizens?
Unknown
2021
Were cases of COVID-19 reported in immigration detention facilities or any other places used for immigration detention purposes?
Unknown
2021
Did the Country Cease or Restrict Deportations/Removals During any Period After the Onset of the Pandemic?
Yes
2020
No
2020
Did the Country Release People from Criminal Prisons During the Pandemic?
Yes
2020
Did Officials Blame Migrants, Asylum Seekers, or Refugees for the Spread of COVID-19?
Yes
2021
Did the Country Restrict Access to Asylum Procedures?
Yes
2021
Did the Country Commence a National Vaccination Campaign?
Yes
2021
Were Populations of Concern Included/Excluded From the National Vaccination Campaign?
Unknown (Included) Included Included Included
2021