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Wednesday, 12 May 2010

Norway: Government 'gets tough' on asylum

Jens StoltenbergImage by Roger Sandum via Flickr
Source: Views and news from Norway

Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg warned he intends to take an even tougher line on asylum policies, and will devote more funding for deportations. He wants to turn back people who have no just claims for asylum.

Under Stoltenberg’s plan, nearly 6,000 foreigners in Norway will be sent out of the country by the end of the year, reports newspaper Dagsavisen.

Stoltenberg told members of the Oslo Labour Party on Tuesday evening that his plan would have been extremely controversial just a few years ago. It’s still “uncomfortable,” Stoltenberg said, “but I believe we must dare to be clear in our asylum policies, and send home those foreigners who have no right to be in Norway.”

Those lacking legal residence papers in Norway will be sent out of the country. Additional funding should cut the time it takes to process asylum applications, ideally to 60 days. Funds will also be earmarked, Stoltenberg said, to upgrade an asylum center at Trandum that’s used to house those awaiting deportation.

There’s been a major decline in asylum applications, after a jump last year. Applications are down 36 percent so far this year.
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