Paula Risikko (NCP), the Minister of the Interior, has revealed that roughly 5,300 asylum seekers have “disappeared” in the middle of their asylum process in Finland since 2015.
The Ministry of the Interior’s estimates indicate that at least half of such asylum seekers have left Finland to travel to their country of origin or to other countries in Europe, Risikko stated in an interview on YLE TV1 on Thursday.
Asylum seekers are considered to have “disappeared” if they leave the reception centre before receiving a decision on their application and if it cannot be ascertained that they have left the country.
Risikko also estimated that establishing immigration removal centres to ensure applicants who have been denied asylum leave the country – a proposal that has gained support in the wake of the recent stabbings in Turku, South-west Finland – would not be a feasible solution to the problem. The residents of such centres, she explained, are not placed under around-the-clock surveillance but are simply required to check in regularly with the staff.
Finland will nevertheless consider all of the options at its disposal, emphasised Risikko. The country has already set up a separate reception centre for, for example, asylum seekers with mental health problems.
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Photo: Heikki Saukkomaa – Lehtikuva
Source: Uusi Suomi