The co-operation between Finland and Afghanistan in encouraging unsuccessful asylum seekers to return to their home country is bearing fruit, rejoices Paula Risikko (NCP), the Minister of the Interior.
“I’m pleased that the return co-operation with Afghan authorities has proven effective,” she stated after her meeting with Hekmat Karzai, the Deputy Foreign Minister of Afghanistan, on Tuesday.
Finland’s priority is to ensure that as many unsuccessful asylum seekers as possible return to their home country voluntarily, reminded Risikko.
The Finnish government has recently faced criticism from both opposition parties and human rights watchdogs for its insistence on deporting unsuccessful asylum seekers. The debate surrounding the issue flared up in early April following reports that a group of failed asylum applicants had been deported from Finland to Afghanistan.
Several members of the opposition took part in a series of impromptu protests against the deportations.
Risikko and Karzai on Tuesday also discussed the political situation in Afghanistan, according to a press release from the Ministry of the Interior. Their meeting represents a continuation the dialogue that began with a delegation led by Päivi Nerg, the permanent state secretary at the Ministry of the Interior, visiting Afghanistan in May, 2016.
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Photo: Heikki Saukkomaa – Lehtikuva
Source: Uusi Suomi