Mogadishu declared safe for asylum seekers, says minister
Monday 17 December 2012
The security situation in the Somalian capital Mogadishu has improved so much, failed asylum seekers can be sent back without any danger, junior immigration minister Fred Teeven told parliament in a briefing on Monday.
The government had stopped deporting Somali nationals because of the fighting around Mogadishu, which made it impossible to move through the city to rural areas.
Countries such as Germany, Sweden and Belgium have also resumed sending Somalis back to their country of origin, the minister said.
Somalis who refuse to return voluntarily, may now be detained in secure centres, Teeven said. However, no-one will actually be sent back to Somalia until parliament has had its say on the new situation, the minister's briefing stated.
Dozens of Somalis have been involved in recent protests by failed asylum seekers, arguing it is too dangerous for them to return.