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Migration

Somalis Get Asylum In Landmark Ruling

Published onsdag 7 oktober 2009 kl 12.13
Islamic Party fighters south of Mogadishu

Sweden’s highest migration court made a landmark decision on Tuesday regarding asylum seekers from conflict-ridden areas, opening the way for Somalis to receive permanent residence in Sweden.

Establishing a precedent for future petitions, the court ruled that three Somali citizens would receive permits for permanent residence because of the armed conflict plaguing the city of Mogadishu.

Dan Eliasson, the General Director of the Swedish Migration Board, was quick to acknowledge the significance of the high court’s decision. “This ruling is one of the most important asylum decisions we’ve had in Sweden in the last three to four years, including those made on a political level,” he told Radio Sweden on Wednesday.

“It has great implications for future refugee policy in Sweden.”

Enar Bostedt, the three men’s lawyer, was cheered by the ruling. “This means that civilians from troubled spots will have an easier time getting asylum in Sweden when they are at risk of suffering indiscriminate violence, exactly like these men do now in Mogadishu.”

In the past, migration courts throughout Sweden had ruled on petitions from Somalis in various manners, with some recommending permanent residence and others deportation. In line the high court’s decision, however, Somalis will now most likely be granted permanent residence.

Moreover, Dan Elisasson says, those that were denied residence permits earlier can now come with new petitions.

“If you can prove you come from Mogadishu, you should be covered by the new ruling,” and be able to receive asylum in Sweden, lawyer Enar Bostedt confirmed.

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