Kai Mykkänen (NCP), the Minister of the Interior, has revealed he is set to make a decision on whether to commission an independent assessment of the position of asylum seekers in Finland.
“The plan is to make the decision early this autumn. I don’t want to promise what the decision will be, as we’re still doing the preparatory work to determine what’s feasible,” he stated in an interview with Uusi Suomi on Tuesday.
Mykkänen assured that commissioning the assessment is nevertheless regarded as a genuine option to move forward in developing the asylum system.
“Together with the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR) and the Ombudsman for Equality, we’ve already looked into how such an assessment could be conducted. We’ve yet to make the final decision, but my thinking is that it’d be very useful to have access to an assessment conducted by an outside independent expert,” he said.
The Ministry of the Interior, he also estimated, will likely be able to decide on whether to commission the assessment independently as the budgetary ramifications will be so limited that no debate will be necessary in the government's budget session scheduled for 28–29 August.
“My presumption is that this would be treated as an ordinary development project under the ministry’s administrative branch,” commented Mykkänen.
Members of the Greens, Left Alliance and Social Democrats have demanded that an independent assessment be launched into the asylum system of Finland.
The Finnish Immigration Service (Migri) conducted an internal analysis of the quality of the asylum system and decisions this spring at the request of Mykkänen, recommending in conclusion that the issue be investigated further.
“When the calls for an independent assessment emerged in February, I pointed out that it’d inevitably take over a year if we decided to open a tendering process for commissioning such an outside assessment. I wanted to conduct an internal analysis quickly, and that allowed us to find areas in need of fine-tuning and draft 28 development proposals, which are now being implemented quickly,” said Mykkänen.
“But it doesn’t rule out the possibility that these issues could be assessed also from the outside,” he added.
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Photo: Roni Rekomaa – Lehtikuva
Source: Uusi Suomi