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Refugees: North Korea

Question for Home Office

UIN HL179, tabled on 2 June 2015

To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answer by the Minister of State for Immigration, James Brokenshire, on 26 March (HC228701), and in the light of the ongoing practice of the United Kingdom of deporting North Korean asylum seekers to South Korea, what assessment they have made of the statement by the government of South Korea in a letter to the Secretary of State in 2010, cited in the judgment of the Upper Tribunal in GP and others (South Korean Citizenship) North Korean CG [2014] UKUT 391(IAC) that North Korean refugees must "desire to live in the Republic of Korea" before they can be considered South Korean nationals or be offered protection and settlement support.

Answered on

8 June 2015

The July 2010 letter written by the South Korean Embassy in London to the Home Office was fully considered by the Upper Tribunal in the case of GP and others.

In paragraph 104 of its determination the Upper Tribunal noted firstly that the subsequent United Kingdom-South Korea Readmission Agreement entered into between the two countries on 10 December 2011 provides a mechanism for the issue of travel documents which is not dependent on the genuineness of the individual’s wish to live in South Korea; and secondly, the question of refugee status is an objective test which requires the person to demonstrate that they have cooperated by seeking to establish whether they can avail themselves of protection from another State of which they may be a citizen.

Answered by

Home Office