Allegations of police ill-treatment, including racially motivated abuses, continued. Asylum seekers were forcibly returned to Greece under the Dublin II Regulation.
Reports of racially motivated police misconduct towards foreign nationals and ethnic minorities continued. Structural shortcomings within the criminal justice system when responding to discrimination, such as the failure to promptly and thoroughly investigate allegations of racially motivated ill-treatment and excessive use of force, and the absence of a comprehensive and coherent system to record incidents of racist misconduct, were not adequately addressed.Top of page
In May 2010, the UN Committee against Torture reiterated its concerns regarding the absence of the crime of torture in Austria’s Criminal Code, the high level of impunity for abuses by police and the lenient sentences imposed by courts in cases of torture or other ill-treatment.
At the Vienna Regional Criminal Court in November, the trial began of the individuals accused of killing Chechen refugee Umar Israilov on 13 January 2009. The proceedings to determine if the police failed to provide protection to Umar Israilov upon the request of his lawyer were pending before the Independent Administrative Tribunal.Top of page
Austria continued to transfer asylum-seekers to Greece under the Dublin II Regulation, despite the lack of a functioning asylum system there. In some cases, such transfers were stopped by interim measures of the European Court of Human Rights. In November, the Court sent a letter to the government asking it to stop transfers to Greece but the authorities decided to maintain the practice of individual assessment of each case.