AuthorEuropean Asylum Support Office (EU body or agency)
Country Guidance | Iraq
January 2021
Why is this country guidance develope d?
On 21 April 2016, the Council of the European Union agreed on the creat ion of a senior-level policy
network, involving all Member States and coordinated by EASO, with the task to carry out a joint
assessment and interpretation of the situation in main countries of origin. 1 The network supports
EU-level policy development based on common country of origin information (COI), by jointly
interpreting such information in light of the relevant provisions of the asylum acquis and taking into
account the content of the EASO training material and practical guides where appropriate. The
development of common analysis and guidance notes was also included as a key area in the new
mandate of the European Union Agency for Asylum proposed by the Europea n Commission. 2
The country guidance is intended as a tool for policy-makers and decision-makers in the context of
the Common European Asylum System (CEAS). It aims to assist in the examination of applications for
international protection by applicants from Iraq, and to foster convergence in decision practices
across Member States.
What is the scope of this update?
The current version of the guidance updates and replaces t he ‘Country Guidance: Iraq’ (June 2019).
This update mainly focuses on the chapters of subsidiary protection (Article 15(c) QD) and internal
protection alternative, as well as on the following profiles: persons perceived to be associated with
ISIL, political opposition activists and protesters, and religious and ethnic minorities and stateless
persons. The chapter on exclusion has also been reviewed and updated.
Minor changes have also been introduced in other parts of the horizontal framework of the
document and the analysis has been developed with regard to the pro files of women and children.
These changes do not generally impact the assessment of the situation in Iraq as per the previous
version of the guidance from June 2019.
Is this guidance binding?
The country guidance, developed by the Member States and published by EA SO, is not binding. The
guidance note, accompanied by the common analysis, shall be taken i nto account by Member States
when examining applications for international protection, without prejudice to their competence for
deciding on individual applications.
Who was involved in the development of this country guidance?
This document is the result of the joint assessment by the Countr y Guidance Network, whose work
was supported by a Drafting Team of selected national experts and by EASO . The European
Commission and UNHCR provided valuable input in this process.
1 Council of the European Union, Outc ome of the 3461st Council meeting, 21 April 2016, 8065/16, available at
2 European Commission, Proposal fo r a Regulation of the European Parliament and of the Counc il on the European Union
Agency for Asylum and repealing Regulation (EU) No 439/2010, 4 May 2016, 2016/0131 (COD), available at rs/sites/homeaffairs/files/what-we-do/polic ies/european-agenda-migration/pro posal-

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