SPRAR’s local bodies receive international protection seekers and holders: people that already applied for asylum (protection seekers), or were granted the status of refugee or any other form of protection (subsidiary or humanitarian).
International protection seekers are men, women and children forced to leave their country of origin due to persecution, war, violation of human rights. They had to leave their homes, workplaces, families, friend, and social environment. Many of them will not see their loved ones ever again. Many of them have undergone torture, severe violence and have experienced dreadful shipwrecks. They had to undertake longest journeys to seek protection in Europe, in Italy. In inhuman conditions, they faced death crossing continents, countries, deserts and seas.

Who is an international protection seeker (asylum seeker)?

The international protection seeker is the individual who, outside his / her Country of origin, applies in another State for the recognition of international protection. The seeker is such, until the competent authorities (in Italy, the Regional Commissions for the Recognition of International Protection) issue a decision on the application for protection.

Who is a refugee?
A refugee is the holder of international protection. It is an individual who “(…)owing to well-founded fear of being persecuted for reasons of race, religion, nationality, membership of a particular social group or political opinion, is outside the country of his nationality and is unable or, owing to such fear, is unwilling to avail himself of the protection of that country (…)”.
Thedefinitionabove is stated in Art. 1A of the Geneva Conventions of 1951, enforced in the Italian Normative System with Law No.722 of 1954.

Who is a subsidiary protection holder?
Subsidiary protection is an additional form of international protection. Its holders – even not meeting the requirements to be recognized as refugees – are granted protection, for in the event of repatriation, they would undergo the risk of serious damage.
The present definition is stated under Art. 2, par. g) of Leg. Decree No. 251/2007.

Who is a humanitarian protection holder?
If the Regional Commission, even rejecting the application for international protections, deems that there are serious grounds of humanitarian nature, it reports and forwards papers on the application for protection to the relevant Police Commissioner for the possible grant of a residence permit for humanitarian protection (Art. 5, paragraph 6 of Legislative Decree No. 286/1998).