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Justice Minister Morgan Johansson (Social Democrat). Photo: TT

Swedish airline industry wants to be able to fly refugees to Sweden

Swedish airlines want the government to consider letting them transport refugees to Sweden, by suspending "Carriers Liability" rules for certain routes, but according to the Justice Minister it's not up to the government to make that decision.

Carriers Liability is an EU directive that makes airlines liable for all costs related to passengers who ultimately don't get granted asylum at their destination in the EU.

"We can't help people in need right now," Jan-Olov Bergling, head of the Swedish Aviation Industry Group, told Swedish Radio News, adding, "We've discussed this and think it's appropriate to suggest this temporary exception to the government."

The Swedish airline industry has been opposed to Carriers Liability ever since it was instituted, and now they want airlines like SAS and Lufthansa to be able to fly refugees over without the risk of getting fined. The exception they want would apply, for example, to Syria's neighboring countries.

While the organization has yet to receive an answer from the government, Justice Minister Morgan Johansson told Swedish Radio News that it is juridically impossible for a single country to temporarily suspend Carriers Liability, since the basis is an EU directive.

Instead, he suggests developing the existing quota refugee system within the framework of the UNHCR's efforts.

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