Subsidiary protection granted
Refugee status granted
Upon ratification of the Geneva Convention, Lithuania took an obligation to grant asylum to foreign nationals who were forced to leave their home countries because of war, prosecution or harsh human rights violations. 500-600 persons on average ask for asylum every year.
There are three forms of asylum in Lithuania: refugee status (which gives the right to permanent residence in Lithuania), subsidiary protection (which is given for two years and may be extended until situation in his/her country improves) and temporary protection (can be granted by the decision of the Lithuanian government if there is a massive influx of foreigners). In most cases subsidiary protection has been granted to asylum applicants.
Despite the fact that in 2015 the EU faced enormous influx of asylum applicants (mostly due to emerging military conflicts or civil wars, and violations of human rights in some countries), Lithuania was not affected. In comparison to 2014, the number of asylum seekers in Lithuania decreased by 40 per cent and only 291 applications for asylum were submitted. The majority of applicants were citizens of the Ukraine, Georgia and Russian Federation.
What is refugee status?
Refugee status is granted for an asylum seeker who is located outside of his/her country of origin and who is unwilling or unable to return to it owing to a well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, political opinion or membership of a particular social group. Persons, granted refugee status, receive the right to permanent residence in Lithuania.
What is subsidiary protection?
Subsidiary protection is granted to a foreigner who does not qualify for refugee status but cannot return to his/her country of origin owing to a fear that he/she will be tortured, suffer inhumane treatment, his/her rights and freedoms will be threatened because of the widespread violence, armed conflict or another situation in his/her country where systematic human rights violations appear. Such a person is granted subsidiary protection in Lithuania, usually for one year, and can remain until situation in his/her home country improves.
What is temporary protection?
Temporary protection is a form of protection that can be granted by the decision of the Lithuanian government if there is a massive influx of foreigners. Individuals cannot apply for this form of protection. Until now temporary protection has never been granted.