Compulsory Greek deportations could be stopped / News / The Foreigner

Compulsory Greek deportations could be stopped. The Norwegian Government is considering temporarily postponing deportations of asylum seekers to Greece after recent concerns about the state of the system. Several countries, including the UK and Denmark, have recently suspended compulsory returns because of Greece’s alleged inadequate legal safeguards. “Norway is the country that deports the most,” Greek asylum lawyer Spyros Rizakos tells NRK.

greece, asylum, refugees, deportation, paal, loenseth, racism, discrimination, human, rights, immigration, appeals, board, police, service, norwegian, helsinki, committee, noas, aitima



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Compulsory Greek deportations could be stopped

Published on Tuesday, 12th October, 2010 at 12:25 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last Updated on 12th October 2010 at 20:36.

The Norwegian Government is considering temporarily postponing deportations of asylum seekers to Greece after recent concerns about the state of the system.

Journey to Greece and Turkey, 03.08
Journey to Greece and Turkey, 03.08
Photo: The Norwegian Helsinki Committee


Disrepair

Several countries, including the UK and Denmark, have recently suspended compulsory returns because of Greece’s alleged inadequate legal safeguards.

“Norway is the country that deports the most,” Greek asylum lawyer Spyros Rizakos tells NRK.

Norway has sent back 255 so far this year.

All countries that are signatories to the Dublin II Regulation, previously known as the Dublin Convention, return illegal immigrants back to where they first applied for asylum.

The government is waiting for a decision from the European Court of Human Rights in Strasbourg’s about stopping the compulsory deportation of one particular person, according to VG.

NRK believes the Norwegian government also is reconsidering its position because of the poor state of Greece’s asylum system. Greece has already asked Norway to stop sending refugees back because of financial problems.

“We are willing to stop all returns to Greece for a limited period of time, if this is combined with other measures there,” says Pål K. Lønseth, State Secretary at the Ministry of Justice

Violation

Norwegian authorities have suspended compulsory deportations to Greece once before.

In February 2008, the UNE (Immigration Appeals Board) asked the Police Immigration Service (PU) to stop returning refugees after fears by NOAS (Norwegian Organisation for Asylum Seekers) and the Norwegian Helsinki Committee (NHC) Greece was contravening the UN’s International Refugee Convention.

A report from both organisations released in collaboration with the Greek organisation AITIMA, called “Out the Back Door - Back Door: illegal deportations of refugees from Greece”, showed 74 refugees were rounded up by police, and transported to the Turkish border near Evros in Northern Greece.

Turkish authorities frequently sent them back to their home country, contrary to Dublin II’s “non-refoulement” principle, where they were at real risk of persecution.

“We haven’t talked to either the Department of Justice or the UNE about the issue recently, but wish to meet with them as soon as possible,” the NHC’s Berit Lindeman told The Foreigner in October 2009.

Persecution

Greece has the highest number of refugees in comparison to its European counterparts, and racism towards an ever-increasing number of refugees is on the increase.

“The influx is so enormous that it is very difficult for us to do something for these people, irrespective of what Greece is now trying to accomplish. There are constantly different incidents that happen in the centre of Athens because our entire social structure is threatened,” State Secretary at the Greek Ministry of Police, Spyros Vougias, told TV2 earlier this autumn.

120,000 refugees are expected to arrive in Greece this year alone. Vougias believes the Dublin II Regulation means many will be trapped there in the future.

State Secretary Pål K. Lønseth believes a common European position is necessary to bring about change.

“Our attitude has been that the Dublin countries should jointly suspend Greece from the Regulation, pending an improvement in conditions for asylum seekers,” he tells TV2.




Published on Tuesday, 12th October, 2010 at 12:25 under the news category, by Michael Sandelson   .
Last updated on 12th October 2010 at 20:36.

This post has the following tags: greece, asylum, refugees, deportation, paal, loenseth, racism, discrimination, human, rights, immigration, appeals, board, police, service, norwegian, helsinki, committee, noas, aitima.





  
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