UN slams Sweden's deportation policy
Published: 14 Aug 08 08:15 CET
United Nation refugee agency UNHCR has criticized Sweden's decision to deport Afghan refugees to Kabul even if they have no social or family ties in the capital city.
The criticism comes after the Swedish Migration Court of Appeal earlier this summer allowed a man who originated from a very unstable part of the country to be deported to Kabul.
“It is not reasonable to believe that somebody will survive on their own in Kabul,” said Hans ten Feld, head of the UNHCR in the Nordic and Baltic regions. The UN body has expressed its opinions on the matter in a letter to the court.
Hans ten Feld lists a number of difficulties that may be faced by refugees who are sent to Kabul.
“Suicide bombings primarily affect civilians. Also, people who have been in the West are kidnapped in order to extort money from their families. Anybody who does not have a family to protect them will find it very difficult to survive in Afghanistan,” he told news agency TT.
Migration Minister Tobias Billstrm was reluctant to comment on the migration court's ruling but said he believed the Swedish system generally worked well.
“The UNHCR's analysis is based on the general security situation in a particular area. But since we in Sweden try each individual case, we ensure that we are not sending back anybody who is under threat,” he said.
TT/The Local (firstname.lastname@example.org/08 656 6518)
Iraqis in suspected repatriation grant racket (19 Aug 08)
Immigrant traders shun banks (18 Aug 08)
Stateless Latvian awaits deportation (18 Aug 08)