Iraqi refugees to be returned to Baghdad

Asylum seekers who have fled from central and southern Iraq will no longer be allowed to stay in Sweden on the basis of the situation in their homeland.

Iraqi refugees to be returned to Baghdad
Photo: Johann Paul Keller

For a permanent residence permit, refugees must be able to show that they are threatened, according to a ruling made by the Swedish Board of Migration on Thursday.

The decision, which will serve as a guiding principle for the board, related to a case involving a 51-year-old man from Baghdad. The man was not able to demonstrate that he was threatened or being followed but instead sought asylum on the general grounds of the situation in the city, reported Dagens Nyheter.

“There is no internal armed conflict in Iraq according to a decision taken by the Migration Court of Appeal,” said Dan Eliasson, head of the Board of Migration.

The ruling could now lead to a mass deportation of many Iraqi refugees who have not yet had their cases dealt with.

In February the Migration Court of Appeal ruled that asylum seekers could be sent back to the three Kurd-controlled provinces in Iraq and the Kurdish areas around them.

Baghdad and the southern parts of the country were at the time considered to be too dangerous.

The Kurdish regional authority has refused to take back citizens who have been sent home from other countries, citing a lack of resources.