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Young Afghan asylum seekers stage sit-in to protest deportation

Published måndag 7 augusti 2017 kl 16.05
Protestor: It was very cold and rainy
(3:26 min)
Sit-in at Mynttorget
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Roughly 40 protesters were present on Monday morning. Credit: Phelan Chatterjee/Sveriges Radio
Mahmood, one of the organisers
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Mahmood was one of the organisers of the protest.
Annette Granström is the legal guardian of a 16-year-old Afghan asylum seeker.
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Annette Granström is the legal guardian of a 16-year-old Afghan asylum seeker. Credit: Phelan Chatterjee/Sveriges Radio

Asylum seekers are challenging the Migration Agency's decision to continue removing young Afghans, despite accepting that Afghan national security has deteriorated.

On Monday morning, there were roughly 40 young asylum seekers seated in the middle of Stockholm's Mynttorget square, between the Royal Palace and Parliament.

Yahya, one of the organisers of the sit-in, explained that they had been demonstrating since yesterday morning, and had stayed out all night.

We want one chance. The Swedish government can make a decision for our future.

The protesters are calling on the director general of the Migration Agency, Mikael Ribbenvik, to put an end to the deportations.

In a letter addressed to the Agency, the protesters suggested there is a double standard between different Swedish government agencies.

The Ministry for Foreign Affairs advises against all travel to Afghanistan, whereas the Migration Agency continues to return Afghan asylum seekers.

Annette Granström, the legal guardian of an unaccompanied 16-year-old Afghan asylum seeker, joined the sit-in.

"My guy from Afghanistan has been here for two years. We still don't know if he can stay," she said. "It's really awful; we can't treat people like this. He speaks Swedish now and has his whole life here. The government has to sort this out somehow, because this is crazy."

Last October, the Swedish and Afghan governments signed an agreement on removing failed asylum seekers from Sweden.

This June, the Migration Agency announced that although Afghan national security had recently deteriorated, each case would continue to be assessed individually.

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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