Luxembourg – Administrative Court, Case no. 46365C

The applicant’s application for statelessness status was denied (both in first and second instance) due to a lack of sufficient proof to determine a difficulty in establishing a nationality, paired with a substantial lack of cooperation of the applicant with the authorities. The Court ruled that the applicant, of Kurdish origin, did not provide coherent and sufficient evidence to support his application.

Case name (in original language)
Luxembourg – 46365C - Audience publique du 25 janvier 2022 Appel formé par Monsieur (Z), …, contre un jugement du tribunal administratif du 7 juillet 2021 (n° 43809 du rôle) en matière de statut d’apatride
Case status
Case number
Luxembourg – Administrative Court, Case no. 46365C, 25 January 2022
Date of decision
Court / UN Treaty Body
Administrative Court of Luxembourg
Language(s) the decision is available in
Applicant's country of residence
Relevant Legislative Provisions
  • 1954 Statelessness Convention
  • 1961 Statelessness Convention
  • European Convention on Human Rights (ECHR, Art. 3)
  • Modified Law of 29th August 2008 on the Free Movement of People and immigration, (Loi modifiée du 29 août 2008 sur la libre circulation des personnes et l’immigration)
  • Resolution no. 1, UN Conference on Statelessness reduction
  • Vienna Convention on the law of treaties
  • European Charter of Fundamental Rights
  • Directive 2008/115/CE of the European Parliament and Council, 16 December 2008

The appeal was brought by the applicant who declared himself to be stateless. At the time, he was residing in Luxembourg and sought the annulment of a decision of the authorities (the Ministry of Immigration and Asylum) of 2019, refusing to grant him statelessness status and containing the 'implicit' order to leave the country.

It appears from the administrative file that the applicant was known by the Italian authorities under a different identity and of Iraqi nationality. He was expelled from Italy to Greece in 2002.

The applicant also applied several times for international protection in Luxembourg. At that time, he declared to be of Iraqi nationality. His applications were rejected by decision for tacit renunciation and unresponsiveness (the applicant did not show up at the appointment to explain his reasons for the protection).

The applicant also applied twice for international protection in the United Kingdom, under Iranian nationality and he was transferred back to Luxembourg.

After multiple rejections, in 2018, the Luxembourgish authorities (the Ministry of Foreign Affairs) informed the applicant of the possibility to grant him a residence permit on the condition that he presented a valid passport and that he fulfilled the conditions of national law. The applicant replied with a request of temporary stay, which was rejected.

In 2019, the applicant applied for the recognition of statelessness status, which the Ministry first and the Administrative Court (first and second instance) second, rejected.

Decision & Reasoning

The Court found that the applicant did not demonstrate that he met the requirements of Article 1 of the 1954 Convention and the Ministry therefore rightly refused to grant him statelessness status. The appeal was rejected on the following grounds (mainly because the statelessness status cannot be presumed but must be supported by sufficient proof):

-     The applicant declared being Kurdish, born in Iran from Kurdish ascendants.

-     Due to his personal and people’s history, it was difficult to establish a nationality (Kurdish minority).

-     He did not consider himself an Iranian national: his life would have been at risk in Iran, which he left at the age of 13.

-     According to the applicant, Iran could not recognise his nationality under any means. He declared having been persecuted, along with his family, in Iran for his Kurdish belonging.

-     Lack of cooperation of the applicant with the Iranian authorities, which could not issue him documents in the absence of a document proving his identity and in the absence of the possibility to verify his statements. They even declared during a video conference - during which the applicant claimed to have no link with Iran and to be of Kurdish origin - that the Iranian embassy was ready to issue him a pass, even if he is of Kurdish origin, the only condition being that he agreed with a voluntary return, which he has however refused.

-     The Administrative Court pointed out that in his previous applications the applicant declared himself to be an Iranian national of Kurdish origin.

-     According to the Administrative Court, believing or considering oneself to be stateless, without providing any concrete evidence, cannot establish statelessness. Two private certificates - undated - certifying that the applicant would be from Iranian Kurdistan could not be considered as such evidence. Also, the applicant did not show any proof of recovery of any kind of nationality (since his arrival in Europe in 2002).


For the above-mentioned reasons, the Administrative Court found the appeal unjustified and dismissed it, confirmed the judgment of first instance, and ordered the applicant to pay the costs of the appeal.

Caselaw cited