01 September 2020
As of 2019, Bhutan reportedly had no immigration detention centres and few cases of people being placed in detention for immigration-related reasons. On 23 March, it was made mandatory for all persons travelling into Bhutan to undergo a period of quarantine to prevent the spread of the coronavirus. There have been reports of people being sent to prison for “clandestine entry and false declaration of travel history” in order to evade mandatory quarantine. As of 1 September 2020, there had been 225 confirmed cases of COVID-19 in the country.
Global Detention Project, “Bhutan Immigration Detention Data Profile,” https://www.globaldetentionproject.org/countries/asia-pacific/bhutan
Channel News Asia, “Bhutan to Gradually Lift COVID-19 Lockdown,” Channel News Asia, 1 September 2020, https://www.channelnewsasia.com/news/asia/bhutan-to-gradually-lift-covid-19-lockdown-13073040
S. Ongmo and T. Parikh, “What Explains Bhutan’s Success Battling COVID-19?” The Diplomat, 8 May 2020, https://thediplomat.com/2020/05/what-explains-bhutans-success-battling-covid-19/
R. Wangchuk, “From Quarantine to Prison,” Kuensel Online, 24 July 2020, https://kuenselonline.com/from-quarantine-to-prison/
Last updated: February 2020
"31. The Working Group understands that there are no immigration detention facilities in the country and that the current practice is to seek the assistance of the police to hold those who have been found to be in breach of the Immigration Act, 2007. The lack of immigration detention facilities appears to have contributed to relatively few cases of immigration detention and, according to information received, such detention would generally not last longer than a day.
"32. The Working Group views the current practice as positive and recalls that deprivation of liberty must be a measure of last resort. It welcomes the restrained approach of the authorities towards the opening of new detention facilities and invites them to consider carefully any initiatives that would lead to opening of new types of places of deprivation of liberty."
--Working Group on Arbitrary Detention, Report on Visit to Bhutan 14-24 January 2019.
IMMIGRATION AND DETENTION-RELATED STATISTICS
Total number of immigration detainees by year
Number of immigration detainees on a given day
Top nationalities of detainees
Number of persons granted alternatives to immigration detention
Number of detained asylum seekers
Total number of detained minors
Number of detained unaccompanied minors
Number of detained accompanied minors
Number of detained stateless persons
Number of apprehensions of non-citizens
Immigration detainees as a percentage of total international migrant population
Estimated total immigration detention capacity
Number of dedicated long-term immigration detention centres
Estimated capacity of dedicated long-term immigration detention centres
Number of dedicated medium-term immigration detention centres
Number of immigration offices
Number of transit facilities
Number of criminal facilities
Number of ad hoc facilities
Number of persons removed/returned (voluntary returns and deportations)
Number of deportations/forced returns only
Percentage of persons removed in relation to total number of people placed in removal procedures
Estimated number of undocumented migrants
Ratio of refugees per 1000 inhabitants
Total number of new asylum applications
Remittances from the country
Unemployment rate amongst migrants
Pew Global Attitudes Poll on Immigration
World Bank Rule of Law Index
Domestic Opinion Polls on Immigration
DOMESTIC LAWS AND POLICIES
Core pieces of national legislation
Regulations, standards, guidelines
Non-immigration-status-related grounds providing for administrative detention in immigration legislation.
Does the country provide specific criminal penalties for immigration-related violations?
Grounds for criminal immigration-related detention/incarceration and maximum potential duration of incarceration
Has the country decriminalized immigration-related violations?
Maximum length for administrative immigration detention in law.
Longest recorded instance of immigration detention.
Maximum length of time in custody prior to issuance of a detention order
Average length of detention
Maximum length of detention for asylum-seekers
Maximum length of detention for persons detained upon arrival at ports of entry
Provision of basic procedural standards
Types of non-custodial measures
Is the detention of vulnerable persons provided in law? Are they detained in practice?
Expedited/fast track removal
Year of Visit
Working Group on arbitrary detention
Working Group on arbitrary detention
31. The Working Group understands that there are no immigration detention facilities in the country and that the current practice is to seek the assistance of the police to hold those who have been found to be in breach of the Immigration Act, 2007. The lack of immigration detention facilities appears to have contributed to relatively few cases of immigration detention and, according to information received, such detention would generally not last longer than a day.
32. The Working Group views the current practice as positive and recalls that deprivation of liberty must be a measure of last resort. It welcomes the restrained approach of the authorities towards the opening of new detention facilities and invites them to consider carefully any initiatives that would lead to opening of new types of places of deprivation of liberty.
Ratio of relevant international treaties ratified
International treaty reservations
Individual complaints procedure
Treaty bodies decisions on individual complaints
Relevant recommendations issued by treaty bodies
Regional legal instruments
Regional treaty reservations
Regional judicial decisions on individual complaints
Recommendations issued by regional human rights mechanisms
Bilateral/multilateral agreements linked to readmission
Federal or centralized governing system
Centralized or decentralized immigration authority
Detention Facility Management
Formally designated detention estate?
Types of detention facilities used in practice
Authorized monitoring institutions
Is the national human rights institution (NHRI) recognized as independent?
Does NHRI carry out visits?
Does NHRI have capacity to receive complaints?
Does NHRI publicly release reports on immigration detention?
Does national preventive mechanism (NPM) carry out visits?
Does NPM have capacity to receive complaints?
Does NPM publicly release reports on immigration detention?
Do NGOs carry out visits?
NGO capacity to receive complaints?
Do NGOs publish reports on immigration detention?
Do parliamentary organs carry out visits?
Do parliamentary organs have capacity to receive complaints?
Do parliamentary organs publicly report on their detention findings?
Do internal inspection agencies (IIAs) carry out visits?
Do IIAs have capacity to receive complaints?
Do IIAs publicly report their findings from detention inspections?
Do international and/or regional bodies (IRBs) visit immigration-related detention facilities?
Do IRBs publicly report their findings from inspections?
Types of privatisation/outsourcing
Detention contractors and other non-state entities
Estimated annual budget for detention operations
Estimated annual budgets for particular detention-related activities
Estimated cost per detainees day (in USD)
Estimated annual budget for non-custodial measures (in USD)
Estimated costs of non-custodial measures (in USD)
Does the country receive external sources of funding?
Description of foreign assistance