Last year, the European Commission proposed to amend the Dublin regulation regarding the Member State responsible for examining the asylum application of unaccompanied children with no family members residing legally in EU. According to the proposal, the Member State responsible for examining the asylum application, is the one where the unaccompanied child is currently present, even if they haven’t applied for asylum there, as long as this is in their best interest. This is in line with the judgment of the European Court of Justice in the case of MA & Others.
UNHCR, UNICEF and ECRE have all three responded positively on this amendment by the European Commission. According to UNHCR, the Commission’s proposal ensures prompt access to international protection for unaccompanied children and gives primary consideration to the best interest of the child at each stage of the asylum procedure. UNHCR underlines that in the case of a decision to send back children to another Member State they may not be properly accommodated, may be unable to access protection in the receiving country and might be detained with adults due to disputes in assessing their age between Member States concerned.
See for more information, here.