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What is a ban on leaving France for terrorism?

Verified 14 November 2022 - Directorate for Legal and Administrative Information (Prime Minister)

The travel ban (IST) is a measure which aims to prevent one French of to go abroad for participate in to terrorist activities. The decision of IST is taken by the minister of the interior provided that there are serious elements to that effect. She's training theinvalidation, i.e. the invalidity, of the passport and/or the identity card of the data subject for a period of 6 months.

An IST can be taken against a French citizen (minor or adult) suspected of planning to travel abroad for the following reasons:

  • Participating in terrorist activities
  • Go to a place where terrorist groups operate that can then lead you to commit terrorist acts upon your return to France

The IST can also be requested for a minor. A parent who fears that his or her child is taken abroad by the other relative or that he leaves the territory alone (fugue, holidays, terrorism,...) can prevent it.

IST's decision is taken by the Minister of the Interior on the basis of serious evidence suggesting that the person poses a terrorist threat.

His decision is written and argumentative.

The person concerned is informed by any means (text message, email...).

IST's decision is then made notified in one of 3 ways:

  • Where it is likely to be located (home, point of passage, etc.), by the police or gendarmerie services
  • By registered letter with acknowledgement of receipt
  • During a police check

A notice shall be attached to the decision informing it of its rights and obligations.

If the person is a minor, his or her parents are immediately notified.

IST causesregistration of the data subject in the wanted persons index (RFT). The information shall be transmitted to the Schengen Information System (SIS).

STI causes passport and/or identity card not valid of the person concerned for a period of 6 months. As a result, it cannot travel.

The IST has a shelf life of Maximum 6 months from its notification.

The Minister of the Interior may renew the IST by written decision and substantiated.

The IST decision is then notified (i.e. made available to the data subject) in the same way as for the initial decision.

The person concerned must return his passport and/or national identity card from notification of IST's decision and, at the latest, within 24 hours following notification.

IST's decision tells who to give out the IDs:

  • National police or gendarmerie services
  • Prefecture of the place where the person is living
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Delivery of a receipt

In exchange for the return of all his identity documents, a receipt is issued to the person concerned (or a certificate pending the receipt).

The receipt is considered as proof of his identity in France.

The duration of the receipt is the same as the IST.

The data subject has several possibilities to challenge the IST decision.

Write to the Ministry of the Interior

The person concerned may write to the Minister of the Interior to present your observations.

It has a maximum of 8 days from the notification the IST decision.

She has the right to a lawyer.

His letter should be addressed to the Directorate of Civil Liberties and Legal Affairs (DLPAJ) of the Ministry of the Interior:

Request an interview

The person concerned may submit his observations during an interview at the prefecture of his residence or whereabouts.

They may be accompanied by a person of their choice or be represented by a lawyer.

The person concerned must contact the prefecture to request the interview within 8 days after the notification the IST decision.

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To bring an action before the Administrative Court

The data subject may to bring proceedings before the administrative court to request the annulment of the IST decision.

To bring an action before the Administrative Court, it may use a interim suspension or a interlocutory freedom.

The appeal must be made within 2 months following the notification the IST decision or its renewal.

The administrative tribunal has 4 months to make a decision.

Leaving or attempting to leave France in violation of an IST is punishable by 3 years imprisonment and €45,000 of fine.

Failure to comply with the obligation to return your passport and national identity card is punishable by 2 years in prison and €4,500 of fine.

IST ends if it is not renewed or if it is revoked by the minister.