Linguistic Analysis

Linguistic Analysis is a method of determining someone’s nationality by analysing the nuances in the language used when in conversation. This is carried out via an interview by one of K International’s Linguistic Analysts, in most cases this is a 30 minute telephone interview.

The interview explores the following issues.

  • The languages spoken by the asylum seeker. This will be asked and then tested during the interview. For instance, residents of Somalia will be able to converse in more than one language this varies from region to region.
  • The asylum seeker’s dialects. Particular attention is paid to the regional accents used when spoken.
  • The asylum seeker’s knowledge of the local area.
  • The asylum seeker’s knowledge of the local culture and customs.

Within 2 hours of the interview K International will provide a report giving an overview of the Linguistic Analyst’s findings. This will be followed within 48 hours by a full report.

The Validation of Nationality Claims

To determine if an asylum seeker is indeed a refugee, a Government must (in part) determine their nationality.

As explained in the 1951 UN convention, a refugee is a person who.

“ owing to a 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 their nationality, and is unable to or, owing to such fear, is unwilling to avail themselves of the protection of that country. ”

It is vital that the Government can distinguish between a ‘real’ refugee who is fleeing their country of origin in genuine fear of persecution and an economic migrant who is simply looking to better their life (and in doing so lied about their country of origin).

The process of nationality verification is made more complex by the very nature of the event of claiming asylum. Asylum Seekers often arrive in the new country without a passport, birth certificate and other ID papers that would help to validate their nationality.

Governments in the developed world now use a technique called ‘linguistic analysis’ to help to determine the validity of the claim of nationality.

Linguistic Analysts Report

The full report (example shown) will contain the following detailed information.

  • The asylum seekers likelihood to be from the country claimed.
  • Details of the recording and/or interview (duration, time, date, case number, etc).
  • A description of the language used (For instance, Somali is spoken in Somalia along with English, French, Italian, Arabic, Af-Maay, Barawe, Zigua and Swahili).
  • Indication of the type of analysis conducted, whether Direct Analysis, Linguistic Analysis, Country/Culture Analysis or a mixture of all 3.

Specific findings about the interview, such as details about pronunciations, word structure, colloquialisms and knowledge of the country and culture. It will also explain how these relate to the claimed nationality of the asylum seeker.

A summary, which will bring together any findings and provide the linguistic analysts final thoughts.

This is accompanied with a signed Witness Statement and a copy of the Linguistic Analysis’ qualifications. We also make provision for attendance in court should an appeal against the decision be heard.

Linguistic Analysis Report

Ordering the Service

This is a bespoke service developed to your department’s exact requirements. Talk to K International’s language experts on 01908 557900, email enquiries@k-international.com or use our contact page.

We will be happy to help.