In the Netherlands, it is recognised that medical reports can provide important evidence that an applicant has been ill-treated in the past. However medical reports submitted in subsequent asylum procedures are often not taken into account in the context of the administrative decision and/or judicial review of this decision. This is due to:
- the fact that the Immigration and Naturalisation Service (IND) has the possibility to dismiss subsequent asylum applications if they lack new facts or circumstances a phrase which is interpretated restrictively; and
- the strict interpretation of the ‘ne bis in idem’ principle by the national courts, which does not allow them to review the substance of a decision on a subsequent asylum application if they find that no new facts or changed circumstances have been submitted.
The central question of this expert advice is whether Dutch law concerning subsequent asylum procedures and in particular the fact that medical reports are not considered new facts in subsequent asylum procedures is in compliance with European Union (EU) law. Even though this expert advice focuses on medical reports in subsequent applications, the analysis is also relevant for other statements or evidence which have been submitted in such applications.