Asylum applications from abroad

Asylum applications from abroad and visa for humanitarian reasons

The Federal Assembly, on 28 September 2012, approved amending the Asylum Act, abolishing the possibility of applying for asylum from abroad. However, people of non-Swiss citizenship who for compelling reasons feel required to leave their home countries and wish to apply in Switzerland may file a visa request with a Swiss diplomatic representation. The representation will determine whether compelling reasons exist warranting the issuance of a visa for Switzerland. Applicants are eligible for a visa if it may be presumed that they are in imminent and serious danger of bodily harm. People who for compelling reasons have left their home countries and are staying in a third state are considered at no risk.

The diplomatic representation that receives a request for humanitarian reasons examines whether the application meets all requirements. In case of doubt, applications are submitted to the State Secretariat for Migration for final assessment. If the information provided by applicants proves to be true and the circumstances they face in their home countries is thus that they cannot reasonably be expected to stay there any longer, an entry visa will be granted.

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