Somalis sent back under strict conditions

30th August 2011, Comments 0 comments

The Netherlands will only send failed asylum seekers from Somalia back to southern or central Somalia if strict conditions are met. 

Immigration minister Gerd Leers has told parliament in a letter that no one will be sent back if they are unable to live by the rules laid down by the Islamic organisation Al-Shabaab. They will also need to have family or contacts who can offer them protection when they return.

The capital Mogadishu is already regarded as too dangerous for failed asylum seekers to return to. People from Mogadishu and south and central Somalia may not be sent back to Puntland or Somaliland in the north if they do not have family there or strong links with local clans.

The minister also acknowledges that the situation in local refugee camps is too dire for returnees from the Netherlands to be housed there. Single women, unaccompanied children and non-Somali minorities may not be sent back at all.

The minister was forced to clarify the position regarding the repatriation of people to Somalia following a recent ruling by the European Court of Human Rights. The court held that Somalia was too dangerous for the United Kingdom to send two convicted criminals back there.

© Radio Netherlands Worldwide

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