• Norway's news in English
 
app_header_v3

Norway alone in sending Eritrean refugees home

The Local · 26 May 2015, 12:11

Published: 26 May 2015 12:11 GMT+02:00

Jøran Kallmyr, state secretary at the Ministry of Justice, plans to soon travel to Eritrea to seek pledges from the Eritrean government that it respect the human rights of returnees. 
 
”If they have been refused a residence permit, it is likely that we can send them back before the end of 2015 if we reach a return agreement,” Kallmyr told Norwegian broadcaster TV2. ”We hope for two good days in Eritrea with great conversations. We expect that the Eritreans will increasingly comply with human rights.”
 
The UN has recently expressed grave concern regarding the human rights situation in Eritrea, and does not expect it to improve.
 
A recent UN-mandated inquiry found that there was a clear pattern of human rights abuse in the country.
 
”Detention is an ordinary fact of life, experienced by an inordinate number of individuals – men and women, old and young, including children,” Mike Smith, Chair of the Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in Eritrea said at a press conference in March.
 
"Detention centres range from official to the unofficial, located above ground or underground. Some have metal containers where prisoners are kept in extreme heat. Once in one of them, there is a likelihood that you will be subject to torture to extract a confession or to simply punish behaviours." 
 
Most Eritrean asylum seekers in Norway have left the country to avoid its brutal national service regime, which can last a lifetime and includes forced labour.
 
Karin de Gruijl told the BBC that most Eritrean asylum seekers arriving in Europe are between 18 and 24 years of age.
 
Story continues below…
"This intensification of recruitment has sparked fear among young people in this age group who don't want to have this perspective of not knowing how long they will have to serve," she told the news channel.
 
Officially, the Eritrean conscription lasts for 18 months, however reports from the country show signs that forced national service is increasing.
 
 

For more news from Norway, join us on Facebook and Twitter.

The Local (news@thelocal.no)

Your comments about this article

Today's headlines
Norway youth 'improves' 5,000-year-old skier carving
The carving of the skier at Tro can never be seen again in its original form, archeologists believe. Photo: Nordland County

The 5,000 year-old carving is among the earliest evidence of stone age man's use of skis.

Norway man in hospital after Pokémon brawl
A Pokémon monster lurking in Oslo's Vigeland sculpture park. Photo: Audun Braastad/NTB

Another victim falls to the Pokémon peril.

Statoil blows $2.5bn on Brazil oil field stake
Statoil's Peregrino A platform offshore Brazil. Photo: Øyvind Hagen/Statoil

Norwegian oil giant has made a big ticket acquisition despite cost cuts, staff reductions, and a recent unexpected loss.

Norwegian activity centre refuses refugee visit
Anti-Discrimination Ombud Hanne Bjurstrøm believes the centre leader may have broken the law by refusing service based on ethnicity or national origin. Photo: Gorm Kallestad/NTB scanpix

Owners of the Nissegården camping and activity centre in Lom municipality said no when local refugee services asked to book a visit for a group of refugees.

Norwegian tourism shrugs off Europe attacks
Photo: Torstein Bøe/NTB Scanpix

The tourism industry in major cities across Europe has been affected by the string of attacks across the continent in recent months, yet the tourist industry in Oslo and Norway in general appears to be heading for another record year.

Norwegian motorist kills 19 reindeer in bloody collision
Reindeer collisions are a frequent occurence on Norway's roads, but rarely on this scale. Photo: Alcino/Flickr

A Norwegian man crashed into a herd of reindeer Tuesday night, killing at least 19.

Norwegian renters’ association: Regulate AirBnB
Poster in Berlin aimed at deterring tourists from using AirBnB. Photo: Gunnhild Hokholt Bjerve / NTB Scanpix

The association is concerned that the popular holiday rental site may be driving up rental prices in Norway's biggest cities.

Researcher: Norwegian politicians should stay out of US election
Minister of Climate and Environment Vidar Helgesen. Photo: Håkon Mosvold Larsen/NTB Scanpix

Norwegian politicians have no business getting involved in the US presidential election, says Hilmar Mjelde from the University of Bergen.

Norwegian minister: Immigration reforms inadequate
Integration Minister Sylvi Listhaug. Photo: Lise Åserud/NTB Scanpix

Integration Minister Sylvi Listhaug of the anti-immigration Progress Party warned that further immigration and asylum restrictions may be on the way.

Tourist presumed dead after Norwegian waterfall drop
Photo: Ned Alley/NTB Scanpix

An American tourist is feared dead after falling from a height of at least 20 metres into a waterfall late Sunday afternoon.

Sponsored Article
Why you should attend an international job fair
Danish scientist: Mysterious 'blue blob' caused by weather
National
Danish scientist: Mysterious 'blue blob' caused by weather
Norwegian school permits burkini in swimming classes
Education
Norwegian school permits burkini in swimming classes
Norway's ‘biggest sovereignty concession’ to EU in years
National
Norway makes ‘biggest sovereignty concession’ to EU in years
Sponsored Article
Avoid hidden fees when sending money overseas
Norway boosts defence against Russia threat
International
Norway boosts defence against Russia threat
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
FACT-CHECK: No, Norway isn’t banning diesel and petrol cars
National
FACT-CHECK: No, Norway isn’t banning diesel and petrol cars – yet
Norway aims to be climate-neutral by 2030
National
Norway aims to be climate-neutral by 2030
Migrant numbers plunge as Norway now 'less attractive'
National
Migrant numbers plunge as Norway now 'less attractive'
Sponsored Article
Why Swiss hospitality graduates are in demand
Society
Record number of kids mark Norway's National Day
Sponsored Article
Gran Canaria: Where Swedes go to work (and play)
Take a ride on Norway's most spectacular road
Travel
Take a ride on Norway's most spectacular road
All 13 on board die in Norway helicopter crash
National
All 13 on board die in Norway helicopter crash
Sponsored Article
Five things Americans should know about voting abroad
National
Norway violated mass murderer's human rights: court
Sponsored Article
Avoid hidden fees when sending money overseas
Modern-day Norwegian Viking conquers Instagram
Lifestyle
Modern-day Norwegian Viking conquers Instagram
Global protests condemn 'legal kidnapping' in Norway
National
Global protests condemn 'legal kidnapping' in Norway
Norway to allow gay church weddings
Society
Church of Norway to allow same-sex weddings
Sponsored Article
Why expats choose international health insurance
'No means no': Norway sends migrants on anti-rape courses
National
'No means no': Norway sends migrants on anti-rape courses
For first time, majority in Norway don’t believe in God
Society
For first time, majority in Norway don’t believe in God
Sponsored Article
Why Swiss hospitality graduates are in demand
Norway preps 'breakthrough' on gender change
Health
Norway preps 'breakthrough' on gender change
Breivik says he'll fight 'to the death' for Nazism
National
Breivik says he'll fight 'to the death' for Nazism
2,090
jobs available