The GDP Submits Information Request to the Government of Djibouti

25 March 2024

Dear Minister of Interior; Immigration Department,

I am writing to you on behalf of the Global Detention Project, a research organisation based in Geneva, Switzerland that studies the laws and policies concerning the detention of migrants, asylum seekers, and refugees worldwide. We are currently conducting a study of policies in the countries of  East  Africa, including Djibouti, because of the challenges facing the entire region in managing migration, ensuring security, and upholding the rights of all people.

It is our understanding that Djibouti has laws regulating migration-related detention. To our knowledge, non-citizens are largely detained in two locations: the coastguard base in the port city of Obock and the Nagad detention center near Djibouti City. However, we have also received reports of concerning conditions in the detention centre, including allegations of detainees facing poor conditions and irregular medical services.

In light of this, we would be grateful if you could provide us with detailed information on the following points: 

  1. A list of detention facilities where migrants, asylum seekers, and non-citizens are currently being detained because of their non-citizen or immigration status. 
  2. The number of people placed in any form of immigration-related detention in 2023 as well as for any other years for which data is available, in addition to data about the numbers of women and children placed in this form of detention. 
  3. Information about the numbers of people deported from the country during 2023 as well as for any other year for which data is available.
  4. Information about the legal framework governing immigration-related detention, including relevant procedures and safeguards in place to protect their rights. 
  5. Information about conditions and operations in these detention facilities, including access to healthcare and visits by family members, legal representatives, or detention monitoring bodies. 
  6. Any measures your  office  is  taking to implement relevant recommendations made during Djibouti’s appraisal at the Universal  Periodic Review in 2018, including:     

129.88 Scale up its efforts at combating trafficking  in persons  and  smuggling of migrants, and ensure the protection of the rights of migrants (Nigeria);                    

129.193 Ensure access to social services and protection for  unaccompanied  migrant children, particularly by integrating them into existing regimes (Portugal);       

129.200 Continue to work with international partners to improve access  to basic services  in refugee camps (Australia);                          

129.201 Improve the protection of refugee  women and girls by increasing the number of law         enforcement officers  in refugee camps (Canada);

129.21 Ratify the 1954 and 1961 conventions on statelessness (Portugal);                                                         

We would greatly appreciate your cooperation in providing us with the requested information, which will be valuable to our research efforts. Please let us know if there are any protocols to follow or specific channels through which we should direct our inquiry.                                                                  

Thank you for considering our request.


Abdul  Aziz  Muhamat

Global  Detention  Project  (Geneva,  Switzerland)