Unaccompanied asylum-seeking children and their situation in the context of the best interests of the child in Italy, Austria, and Germany

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Merz, Nathalie
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This thesis examines the situation of unaccompanied minors (UAM) in three European countries, Italy, Austria, and Germany, taking into account children’s rights, especially the best interest of the child. With the influx of individuals seeking international protection in Europe, many children (those under 18), who are not in the company of their parents or legal guardian, are among them. Despite the ratification of the UN Convention on the Rights of the Child by these countries (Italy, Austria, and Germany) and the existence of regional and domestic laws aimed at safeguarding children’s rights and the “best interests of the child,” there are still shortcomings in their implementation. Enhancing the implementation becomes crucial when considering the reality of experiences encountered by UAM. As a result, unaccompanied minor children remain unprotected and deprived of a “normal” childhood. The differences between international protection statuses and the right to family reunification are in focus, especially since children need parental care. In some countries, such as Austria and Germany, beneficiaries of subsidiary protection have fewer possibilities to reunite with their families due to long waiting times.
Second semester University: Uppsala University
unaccompained migrant children, asylum, asylum seekers, children, Convention on Rights of the Child, children's rights, Italy, Austria, Germany