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Refugee expulsion

Expelled to the wrong country - now he files for damages

Published lördag 30 april 2011 kl 11.34
The man's lawyer, Per E Samuelson. Photo: Yvonne Åsell/ Scanpix

A man who was forcefully expelled from Sweden to Ghana in 1995, despite not being from there, is demanding 1,6 million US dollars in damages from the Swedish state, Swedish Radio reports. He has been imprisoned in Ghana for several years, since the authorities there viewed him as an illegal immigrant.

Peter Ekwiri was accompanied by Swedish police to Ghana in may 1995. A so called "language analysis" had been performed by the Swedish Immigration Board, which concluded that Ekwiri came from Ghana. It made no difference that Peter Ekwiri himself protested and said he was from Sudan.

Before the Swedish police handed him over to that Ghanan authorities, a document was signed confirming that Sweden would see to that Ekwiri would be taken back to Sweden if it turned out that he is not from Ghana.

Ekwiri was 22 years of age when he was sent to Ghana. Now he is 38 and has returned to Sweden. He has only one functioning lung after he caught tuberculosis while in prison in Ghana.

His case first became known to the wider public in Sweden after a TV-documentary in 2001. The documentary showed that Swedish police had expelled also other people to Ghana who did not belong there.

According to Peter Ekwiri's Swedish lawyer, Per E Samuelsson, who has filed the claim for damages, says that he is convinced there are more cases like this that have never surfaced. "The documents we have dug up shows that Sweden used Ghana systematically in this way only a few years ago," Per E Samuelsson tells Swedish Radio's Konflikt-programme.

Our journalism is based on credibility and impartiality. Swedish Radio is independent and not affiliated to any political, religious, financial, public or private interests.
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