Norway closer to return asylum-seeking minors to Afghanistan
Some 90 refugee children that have been rejected asylum are one step closer to being sent back home after Norway and Afghanistan last Wednesday agreed to build a reception centre in Kabul. – We have agreed with the Afghan authorities to establish a centre to accommodate asylum-seekers who are not in need of protection but where the care-taker is not known. The centre will have room for 200 children, with the possibility for expansion, says Pål Lønseth, State Secretary in the Ministry of Justice. Ombudsman for Children, Reidar Hjermann, is concerned that Norway cannot guarantee the safety of the children. – It creates uncertainty about the children’s safety when the Ministry of Justice is not using transparency or asks for input during the planning, he says. Even though the Norwegian authorities are helping with funds to establish care and education, the full responsibility for the children’s safety and development still lies with the Afghan authorities.