2,544 persons returned voluntarily during the first semester of 2013

Compared to 2012, we are seeing a substantial decrease of voluntary return to Brazil. This is a result of the measures that Fedasil has taken with regard to Brazilian nationals. Still, the number of returning migrants remains stable, despite the decreasing number of asylum applications in 2013.

Fedasil is the agency responsible in Belgium for voluntary return. The practical organization of the return journey is entrusted to the International Organization for Migration (IOM). Nearly all migrants – (ex-)asylum seekers as well as undocumented migrants – are eligible for voluntary return.The most significant destination countries are Russia and Ukraine. Brazil rounds out the top 3, but here the numbers decrease.In comparison to the first semester of 2012, we note a decrease of 37% for returnees to Brazil (222 in 2013 compared to 352 in 2012). This is a declining trend that has continued month by month. Their numbers are decreasing as a result of the measures that Fedasil took in early January in order to combat abuse of the programme. For instance, a social investigation of Brazilian nationals who request voluntary return is now conducted in order to ascertain whether it indeed concerns a definitive return.In the last five months, 2,544 people returned voluntarily: this result is comparable to that of 2012, while the overall number of asylum applications is considerably lower. If we do not consider the group of Brazilian nationals, there has even been a slight increase in the number of returnees as compared to the same period in 2012.Migrants considering voluntary return can contact Fedasil by means of the toll-free number 800-32 745, or they can go to the information desk in the Fedasil Dispatching offices (close to Brussels-Nord station).