Transit camps for asylum seekers in Africa?

Dag Terje Andersen. Photo: government.no

The high influx of asylum seekers to Norway continues. So far this year the number of applicants is already 2500 higher than at the same time last year, which was also a record year. The Progress Party wants transit camps in Africa.

From 2007 to 2008 the number of aylum seekers to Norway increased by 121 per cent, from 6530 to 14,430.

If the trend continues, Norway will this year end up with 18,000 asylum seekers or more, says Minister of Labor and Inclusion, Dag Terje Andersen.

The right-wing Progress Party (FrP) on Saturday proposed that Norway should set up transit camps in Africa, where all asylum seekers would wait while their applications were processed.

The party’s spokesman on immigration affairs, Per-Willy Amundsen, believes transit camps in countries like Uganda and Tanzania would lead to a drop in applications for asylum in Norway.

“Nations that receive aid from Norway will have to accept that we establish transit camps there,” Amundsen says. He thinks Tanzania would be very suitable, since it receives direct aid and is a relatively stable nation.

FrP-leader Siv Jensen supports the proposal. However, the proposal has received strong criticism from the other political parties in Norway.

Prime Minister Jens Stoltenberg calls the proposal unrealistic. He agrees that asylum seekers without a valid residence pemit should be returned, but to the country of origin.

Source: Norway Post / NRK

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