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    January 24, 2016

    280 Refugees Await Deportation From Norway to Russia

    Translated by Ollie Richardson for Fort Russ
    24th January, 2016

    The Norwegian authorities have prepared a list for the deportation of 280 refugees to Russia, according to the Director of the Murmansk transport companies involved for their transportation.

    "I have been informed by the Norwegian party, they hold a list for 280 people. About 80 of them — in the camp in the town of Kirkenes (on the border with Russia — ed.), the rest in other centers, but they are ready at the right time to be transported to Kirkenes, where they will be sent to Russia", said the Director of a transport company. The Norwegian authorities signed a contract with his firm for the transportation of refugees to Russia.

    According to him, all 280 people, of which the Norwegian authorities intend to send to Russia, have Russian visas or residence permits. Earlier, the representative of the Norwegian police explained to RIA Novosti that these refugees have lived in Russia for several months or even years, before they decided to go to Norway. They did it not for the fear of their life, but only out of a desire to improve their conditions. Therefore, asylum was denied.

    At the same time, said the representative of the transport firm, it is still not clear when they will be deported. "There was a lack of coordination between the Norwegian and Russian sides. We do not have any permissions, there is allegedly too few inspectors at the border to handle this amount of refugees, the computers cant cope," said the Director of the company.

    Earlier, the head of the Foreign Ministry of Norway, Børge Brende, said Oslo and Moscow need to coordinate the deportation of refugees who arrived in Norway through Russia from the Middle East, and the expulsion of migrants will be suspended.

    On Tuesday, 19th January, the first bus arrived to Murmansk from Norway with 13 returnees. They were all sent to the place of residence in other regions of Russia. On January 21st, Russia was about to accept 30 refugees, but due to the outbreak of brawls, their departure was delayed — the group of refugees with the support of the sympathisers within the volunteers fled. One family escaped with their three children, the police managed to detain three, including a pregnant woman, who took refuge in the Church of Kirkenes.

    Since then, the export of refugees to Russia has been suspended, now the Norwegian party is discussing the possibility of their expulsion with the help of planes — from the same camp in Kirkenes near the city's airport, to the airport in Murmansk.

    Later the Norwegian NTB Agency, with reference to representatives of police, reported that Norway is considering all possible options after the suspension of deportation of refugees to Russia, including across other borders.

    "We are also considering this possibility, but we are now in a stage of waiting until a decision will be made at the political level," said a police spokesman.

    During the autumn alone, the Russian-Norwegian border in the Murmansk region was crossed by about 5.5 thousand refugees, mostly natives of Asian countries (Syria, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran, Iraq, India, Nepal and others). Most of them used bikes for this purpose, purchased from local residents as pedestrians crossing on the Russian-Norwegian border is prohibited.

    The Norwegian authorities have stated that most of them will be refused asylum as they come from countries where there is no military action, or have a residence permit in Russia.

    Norwegian lawyers appealed to the European court of human rights in Strasbourg with the requirement to intervene and stop the deportation as the refugees will not be able to appeal the denials. Ordinary Norwegians also held several rallies in support of refugees, in particular such an action was carried out by the residents of the county on Saturday night in Tromsø, where a torchlight procession was held, which was attended by about 250 residents and refugees themselves.
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