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DJEMAOUN LAWYER, law firm in Paris, experienced in asylum Law

Asylum Law

A few words about the firm's philosophy

In Bambara (one of the national languages of Mali), one and the same term designates the words "foreigner" and "host": "dunan". Thus, the foreigner is not thought of as someone who is, at the outset, outside the social group in which he or she is situated, but as a guest to whom one owes hospitality.  It is in this conception of the stranger that the firm is situated.

The semantic paradigm is thus a determining factor (if not the only one) in the conception that everyone has of the foreigner, and thus shapes the right to asylum. Rather than talking about a "migration crisis", it would be more appropriate to talk about a "reception crisis" within the member states of the European Union.

Let us remember that "we are always strangers to someone".Tahar BEN JELLOUN, Racism explained to my daughter, Seuil, 1997

What is asylum ?

The word "asylum" comes from the Greek "asulon" and the Latin "asylum" designating an inviolable space because of the divine protection it enjoys. The asylum was thus initially conceived as a space endowed with particular qualities because of the protection that this space offered.

Today, asylum is still defined as a place of protection sought by the person who is deprived of it, but it is a legal protection.

There are 3 possible grounds for granting refugee status:

Conventional asylum, which is based on the Geneva Convention of July 28, 1951 relating to the Status of Refugees (which came into force on April 22, 1954), to which France is a party, means that a refugee is a person who "owing to a well founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion, is outside the country of his nationality and is unable, or owing to such fear is unwilling to avail himself of the protection of that country", it being understood that persecution may be the work of "non-state actors in cases where the authorities (...) refuse or are unable to provide the necessary assistance. ) refuse or are unable to offer protection", as provided for in Article L. 513-2 of the CESEDA.


The Geneva Convention of 28 July 1951 sets out four conditions for refugee status:


  • have left their country

  • Fear of persecution

  • reasons for persecution (five reasons: race, religion, nationality, membership in a particular social group or political opinion)

  • believe that they are unable to seek protection in their country


Constitutional asylum is guaranteed by the fourth paragraph of the Preamble to the 1946 Constitution, which states that "Any person persecuted because of his action in favor of freedom has the right to asylum in the territories of the Republic" and by paragraph 2 of Article 53-1 of the Constitution of October 4, 1958, which states that "However, even if the request does not fall within their jurisdiction by virtue of these agreements, the authorities of the Republic always have the right to grant asylum to any foreigner persecuted because of his action in favor of freedom or who seeks the protection of France for another reason". Constitutional asylum is codified in article L. 511-1 of the CESEDA, which provides that "the status of refugee is recognized to any person because of his action in favor of freedom".


2 conditions :


  1. It is necessary to have already undergone persecution

  2. Which result in an action in favour of freedom


Constitutional asylum is becoming increasingly rare as it overlaps with actions in favor of freedom that lead to persecution and are eligible for conventional asylum. Moreover, obtaining constitutional asylum is a national protection, recognized only in France. The signatory States of the Geneva Convention only recognize conventional asylum, which is an international protection.


Subsidiary protection is intended for foreigners who are threatened with persecution, but who do not fall within the legal framework defined by article 1, paragraph 2 of the Geneva Convention. This protection, considered "subsidiary" (since it is necessary for the foreigner to establish that he could not be recognized as a refugee on other legal grounds) is thus granted to the person who is at risk of being executed (and not only, as before the law of July 29, 2015, the death penalty, which implied a trial), torture or inhuman or degrading treatment or punishment, or who risks, in the case of a civilian, being exposed to a serious and individual threat to his or her life or person due to violence that may extend to persons regardless of his or her personal situation and resulting from a situation of internal or international armed conflict (Article L. 512-1 of the CESEDA).

The firm's services

Samy Djemaoun assists and represents asylum seekers in all the following procedures :

Procedure before the French Office for the Protection of Refugees and Stateless Persons (OFPRA) :

  • Application for protection from persecution on the grounds :

  • of race, nationality or membership in a social group

  • of religion

  • of political opinion

  • Application for protection on the basis of family unity

  • Application for protection under the mandate of the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR)

  • Application for subsidiary protection

  • Second request to OFPRA for a review of his asylum application

Procedure before the National Asylum Court (CNDA) :

  • Appeal against the decision of the Director General of OFPRA concerning an application for refugee status or subsidiary protection

  • Non-suspensive appeal against the decision of the Director General of OFPRA refusing an asylum application in detention (administrative detention center)

  • Appeal against the decision of the Director General of OFPRA withdrawing an asylum application

​Proceedings before the Administrative Court:

  • Appeal against a transfer order (Dublin III)

  • Appeal against the rejection of an application to enter French territory on the basis of asylum

  • Appeal against the decision of the Director General of the French Office for Immigration and Integration (OFII) refusing to grant material reception conditions

  • Appeal against the decision refusing the registration of an asylum application

  • Appeal against the refusal to issue the certificate of application for asylum

  • Appeal against the decision of OFPRA refusing to recognize the status of stateless person

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