Vol. 42 (2022)
Polish Practice

The Impact of the Return Directive on Polish Return Law and Practice – Recent Developments

Katarzyna Strąk
Institute of Law Studies of the Polish Academy of Sciences

Published 2023-06-30

Keywords

  • irregular immigration,
  • EU return policy,
  • harmonisation,
  • national law,
  • judicial scrutiny,
  • fundamental rights

How to Cite

Strąk, K. (2023). The Impact of the Return Directive on Polish Return Law and Practice – Recent Developments. Polish Yearbook of International Law, 42, 351–370. https://doi.org/10.24425/PYIL.2023.147335

Abstract

This research aims to present and analyse selected issues of Polish return law and practice in the light of the European Union return policy and against the backdrop of the migration crises of 2015 and 2021-2023, with a return decision placed at the heart of the study. The principal research objective is to examine whether the provisions of the 2013 Act on Foreigners follow the standards established in the EU Return Directive as well as in the case-law of the Court of Justice of the European Union. Another objective is to analyse the interaction between the provisions forming the uniform national return policy, but which originate from different legal systems (national and European ones). To this end “anti-terrorism” and “pushback” cases under Polish law will be assessed. The article thus poses several crucial questions, inter alia whether the Polish law and practice comply with standards established at the European level, especially insofar as fundamental rights of individuals are concerned; whether they contribute to the establishment of an effective EU return policy; and what role harmonisation plays in this process.

References

  1. Opinion of Advocate General Sharpston of 18 May 2017 in Case C-225/16 Criminal proceedings against Mossa Ouhrami, ECLI:EU:C:2017:398, para. 36.
  2. Acosta Arcarazo D., Geddes A., The Development, Application and Implications of an EU Rule of Law in the Area of Migration Policy, 51(2) Journal of Common Market Studies 179 (2013).
  3. Additional opinion of Advocate General Mengozzi of 22 February 2018 in Case C-181/16 Sadikou Gnandi v. État belge, ECLI:EU:C:2018:90, fn 8.
  4. Baranowska G., Pushbacks in Poland: Grounding the practice in domestic law in 2021, XLI Polish Yearbook of International Law (2023), pp. 193-211.
  5. Bodnar A., Grzelak A., The Polish-Belarusian Border Crisis and the (Lack of) European Union Response, 28(1) Białostockie Studia Prawnicze (2023), pp. 57-86.
  6. Case C 444/17 Prefet des Pyrenees Orientales v. Abdelaziz Arib and others, ECLI:EU:C:2019:220, para. 55.
  7. Case C-112/20 M. A. v. État belge, ECLI:EU:C:2021:197 (taking into account the best interests of the child at the time of the adoption of the return decision).
  8. Case C-146/14 PPU Bashir Mohamed Ali Mahdi, ECLI:EU:C:2014:1320, para. 87.
  9. Case C-225/16 Criminal proceedings against Mossa Ouhrami, ECLI:EU:C:2017:590, para. 56.
  10. Case C-240/17 E, ECLI:EU:C:2018:8, para. 43.
  11. Case C-249/13 Khaled Boudjlida v. Préfet des Pyrénées-Atlantiques, ECLI:EU:C:2014 (right to be heard).
  12. Case C-329/11 Alexandre Achughbabian v. Préfet du Val-de-Marne, ECLI:EU:C:2011:807, para. 28.
  13. Case C-329/11 Alexandre Achughbabian v. Préfet du Val-de-Marne, ECLI:EU:C:2011:807, para. 50.
  14. Case C-329/11 Alexandre Achughbabian v. Préfet du Val-de-Marne, para. 29.
  15. Case C-430/11 Criminal proceedings against Md Sagor, ECLI:EU:C:2012:777, para. 31.
  16. Case C-47/15 Sélina Affum v. Préfet du Pas-de-Calais and Procureur général de la Cour d’appel de Douai, ECLI:EU:C:2016:408, para. 54.
  17. Case C-47/15 Sélina Affum v. Préfet du Pas-de-Calais and Procureur général de la Cour d’appel de Douai, para. 74.
  18. Case C-47/15 Sélina Affum v. Préfet du Pas-de-Calais and Procureur général de la Cour d’appel de Douai, para. 74.
  19. Case C-528/21 MD, ECLI:EU:C:2023:341 (prohibition of refusal to apply certain final court decisions).
  20. Case C-534/11 Mehmet Arslan v. Policie ČR, Krajské ředitelství policie Ústeckého kraje, odbor cizinecké policie, ECLI:EU:C:2012:343, para. 42.
  21. Case C-61/11 PPU Hassen El Dridi, alias Soufi Karim, ECLI:EU:C:2011:268, para. 33.
  22. Case C-61/11 PPU Hassen El Dridi, alias Soufi Karim, para. 36.
  23. Case C-61/11 PPU Hassen El Dridi, alias Soufi Karim, paras. 34-41.
  24. Case C-663/21 Bundesamt fuer Fremdenwesen und Asyl v. AA, ECLI:EU:C:2023:540, para. 49.
  25. Case C-673/19 M, A, Staatssecretaris van Justitie en Veiligheit v. Staatssecretaris van Justitie en Veiligheit, T, ECLI:EU:C:2021:127, para. 32.
  26. Case C-69/21 X v. Staatssecretaris van Justitie en Veiligheid, ECLI:EU:C:2022:913 (prohibition of inhuman or degrading treatment, respect for private or family life).
  27. Case C-69/21 X v. Staatssecretaris van Justitie en Veiligheit, ECLI:EU:C:2022:913, para. 53, Case C-663/21 Bundesamt fuer Fremdenwesen und Asyl v. AA, ECLI:EU:C:2023:540, para. 46.
  28. Chlebny J., Artykuł 1, in: J. Chlebny (ed.), Prawo o Cudzoziemcach. Komentarz [Act on Foreigners. A Commentary], Beck, Warszawa: 2020.
  29. Chlebny J., Public Order, National Security and the Rights of Third-Country Nationals in Immigration Cases, 20(2) European Journal of Migration and Law (2018), pp. 115-134.
  30. Ciobanu C., Helobi M., Russian roulette: EU dreams of migrants now come through Moscow, Balkan Insight, 19 December 2022, available at: https://balkaninsight. com/2022/12/19/russian-roulette-eu-dreams-of-migrants-now-come-through-moscow/ (accessed 30 April 2023).
  31. Commission Recommendation (EU) 2017/2338 of 16 November 2017 establishing a common ‘Return Handbook’ to be used by Member States’ competent authorities when carrying out return-related tasks, 2017, OJ L 339.
  32. Commission Recommendation, supra note 31, p. 146.
  33. Communication from the Commission to the Council and the European Parliament of 28 March 2014 on EU Return Policy, COM(2014)199 final.
  34. Council of Europe, Pushed beyond the limits. Four areas for urgent action to end human rights violations at Europe’s borders. Recommendation 7 April 2022, available at: https://www.coe.int/en/web/commissioner/-/ pushed-beyond-the-limits-urgent-action-needed-to-stop-push-back-at-europe-s-borders (accessed 30 April 2023).
  35. Dąbrowski P., Artykuł 302, in: J. Chlebny (ed.), Prawo o Cudzoziemcach. Komentarz [Act on Foreigners. A Commentary], Beck, Warszawa: 2020.
  36. Díaz Crego M., Clarós E., Data on returns of irregular migrants, European Parliament Briefing, 2021, available at: https://tinyurl.com/2s3wjj43 (accessed 30 April 2023).
  37. Directive 2008/115/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 16 December 2008 on common standards and procedures in Member States for returning illegally staying third-country nationals, [2008] OJ L 348.
  38. European Commission, Proposal for a directive of the European Parliament and of the Council on common standards and procedures in Member States for returning illegally staying third-country nationals, 1 September 2005, COM(2005)391.
  39. Eurostat, Returns of irregular migrants – quarterly statistics, 2023, available at: https://tinyurl. com/2m6vm4bs (accessed 1 July 2023).
  40. Goldner Lang I., Nagy B., External Border Control Techniques in the EU as a Challenge to the Principle of Non-Refoulement, 17(3) European Constitutional Law Review 442 (2021); E. Tsourdi, Asylum in the EU: One of the Many Faces of Rule of Law Backsliding, 17(3) European Constitutional Law Review 471 (2021).
  41. Joined Cases C-704/20 and C-39/21 Staatssecretaris van Justitie en Veiligheid v. C and B and X v. Staatssecretaris van Justitie en Veiligheid, ECLI:EU:C:2022:858 (fundamental right to liberty, fundamental right to an effective judicial remedy).
  42. Klaus W. (ed.), Beyond the law. Legal assessment of the Polish state’s activities in response to the humanitarian crisis on the Polish-Belarusian border, Publishing House of ILS PAS, Warszawa: 2022.
  43. Kosińska A.M., Wojtasik P. (eds.), Acquis return. Doświadczenia implementacji i rozwój polityki powrotowej Unii Europejskiej [Acquis Return. Implementation Experiences and Development of Return Policy], Fundacja Instytut na rzecz Państwa Prawa, Lublin: 2015.
  44. Lutz F., Prologue: The Genesis of the EU’s Return Policy, in: M. Moraru, G. Cornelisse, P. de Bruycker (eds.), Law and Judicial Dialogue on the Return of Irregular Migrants from the European Union, Hart Publishing, Oxford, New York: 2020.
  45. Matevžič G., The Right to Know. Comparative Report on Access to Classified Data in National Security Immigration Cases in Cyprus, Hungary and Poland, Hungarian Helsinki Committee, September 2021, available at: https://helsinki.hu/en/comparative-report-on-access-to-classified-data-in-national-security-immigration- cases/ (accessed 30 April 2023).
  46. National transposition measures communicated by the Member States, available at: https://eur-lex.europa. eu/legal-content/EN/NIM/?qid=1544477065620&uri=CELEX%3A32008L0115 (accessed 30 April 2023).
  47. Odpowiedź na interpelację nr 30654 w sprawie sytuacji na granicy polsko-białoruskiej [Response to interpellation 30654 on the situation at Polish-Belarusian border], 2022, available at: https://www.sejm.gov. pl/sejm9.nsf/InterpelacjaTresc.xsp?key=CBPJ2H (accessed 30 April 2023).
  48. Opinion of Advocate General Szpunar of 28 April 2015 in C-290/14 Criminal proceedings against Skerdjan Celaj, ECLI:EU:C:2015:285, para. 50.
  49. Polish Ombudsman, Letter to the Marshall of Senate, 3 October 2021, XI.543.13.2018, available at: https://bip.brpo.gov.pl/sites/default/files/2021-10/Opinia_RPO_cudzoziemcy_3.10.2021.pdf (accessed 30 April 2021).
  50. Postanowienie Naczelnego Sądu Administracyjnego [Order of the Supreme Administrative Court], 19 November 2021, II OZ 1152/20.
  51. Postanowienie Naczelnego Sądu Administracyjnego [Order of the Supreme Administrative Court], 16 April 2021, II OZ 163/21.
  52. Postanowienie Wojewódzkiego Sądu Administracyjnego w Rzeszowie [Order of the Regional Administrative Court in Rzeszów], 9 January 2019, II SA/Rz 1153/18.
  53. Regulation (EU) 2016/399 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 9 March 2016 on a Union Code on the rules governing the movement of persons across borders (Schengen Borders Code), [2016] OJ L 73.
  54. Schieffer M., Directive 2008/115, in: K. Hailbronner (ed.), EU Immigration and Asylum Law. Commentary on EU Regulations and Directives, Beck, München: 2010.
  55. Schieffer, supra note 9, p. 1509.
  56. Strąk K., Polityka Unii Europejskiej w zakresie powrotów. Aspekty prawne [EU Return Policy. Legal Aspects], Wolters Kluwer, Warszawa: 2019.
  57. Strąk K., The order to leave the territory of the Republic of Poland in light of Directive 2008/115 (the Return Directive), in: W. Klaus (ed.), Beyond the law. Legal assessment of the Polish state’s activities in response to the humanitarian crisis on the Polish-Belarusian border, Publishing House of ILS PAS, Warszawa: 2022.
  58. Ustawa o cudzoziemcach [Act on Foreigners], Journal of Laws 2013, item 1650.
  59. Ustawa Prawo o postępowaniu przed sądami administracyjnymi [Law on Proceedings before Administrative Courts], Journal of Laws 2002, No. 153, item 1270.
  60. Uzasadnienie do projektu ustawy o działaniach antyterrorystycznych [Explanatory Memorandum to the draft Antiterrorism Act] 2016, available at: https://tinyurl.com/2rb44sae (accessed 30 April 2023).
  61. Uzasadnienie do projektu ustawy o zmianie ustawy o cudzoziemcach oraz ustawy o udzielaniu cudzoziemcom ochrony na terytorium Rzeczypospolitej Polskiej [Explanatory memorandum to the draft act on amending the act on foreigners and the act on granting protection on the territory of the Republic of Poland], 2021, available at: https://tinyurl.com/y5fesstx (accessed 30 April 2023).
  62. Wieliński B.T., Deportowana z Polski Ludmiła Kozłowska z prawem pobytu w Belgii [Lyudmyla Kozlovska, deported from Poland, with a residence permit in Belgium], Wyborcza.pl, 4 March 2019, available at: https://tinyurl.com/3vdnzxd4 (accessed 30 April 2023).
  63. Wyrok Naczelnego Sądu Administracyjnego [Judgment of the Supreme Administrative Court], 18 May 2021, II OSK 1644/20.
  64. Wyrok Naczelnego Sądu Administracyjnego [Judgment of the Supreme Administrative Court], 20 December 2018, II OSK 2341/18.
  65. Wyrok Naczelnego Sądu Administracyjnego [Judgment of the Supreme Administrative Court], 10 May 2018, II OSK 392/18.
  66. Wyrok Naczelnego Sądu Administracyjnego [Judgment of the Supreme Administrative Court], 17 November 2020, II OSK 744/20.
  67. Wyrok Naczelnego Sądu Administracyjnego [Judgment of the Supreme Administrative Court], 6 September 2022, II OSK 457/21.
  68. Wyrok Naczelnego Sądu Administracyjnego [Judgment of the Supreme Administrative Court], 10 May 2023, II OSK 1735/22.
  69. Wyrok Wojewódzkiego Sądu Administracyjnego [Judgment of the Regional Administrative Court in Warsaw], 18 May 2022, IV SA/Wa 609/22.
  70. Wyrok Wojewódzkiego Sądu Administracyjnego w Białymstoku [Judgment of the Regional Administrative Court in Białystok], 27 October 2022, II SA/Bk 558/22.
  71. Wyrok Wojewódzkiego Sądu Administracyjnego w Warszawie [Judgment of the Regional Administrative Court in Warsaw], 29 March 2019, IV SA/Wa 3371/18.
  72. Wyrok Wojewódzkiego Sądu Administracyjnego w Warszawie [Judgment of the Regional Administrative Court in Warsaw], 4 February 2019, IV SA/Wa 2781/18.
  73. Wyrok Wojewódzkiego Sądu Administracyjnego w Warszawie [Judgment of the Regional Administrative Court in Warsaw], 13 April 2017, IV SA/Wa 363/17.
  74. Wyrok Wojewódzkiego Sądu Administracyjnego w Warszawie [Judgment of the Regional Administrative Court in Warsaw], 11 May 2018, IV SA/Wa 358/18.
  75. Wyrok Wojewódzkiego Sądu Administracyjnego w Warszawie [Judgment of the Regional Administrative Court in Warsaw], 13 December 2018, IV SA/Wa 2659/18.
  76. Wyrok Wojewódzkiego Sądu Administracyjnego w Warszawie [Judgment of the Regional Administrative Court in Warsaw], 26 April 2022, IV SA/Wa 420/22.
  77. Wyrok Wojewódzkiego Sądu Administracyjnego w Warszawie [Judgment of the Regional Administrative Court in Warsaw], 27April 2022, IV SA/Wa 471/22.
  78. Wyrok Wojewódzkiego Sądu Administracyjnego w Warszawie [Judgment of the Regional Administrative Court in Warsaw], 20 May 2022, IV SA/Wa 615/22.
  79. Wyrok Wojewódzkiego Sądu Administracyjnego w Warszawie [Judgment of the Regional Administrative Court in Warsaw], 27 May 2022, IV SA/Wa 772/22.
  80. Wyrok Wojewódzkiego Sądu Administracyjnego w Warszawie [Judgment of the Regional Administrative Court in Warsaw], 5 October 2022, IV SA/Wa 1031/22.