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Sweden deports man to wrong country

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10:18 CET+01:00
Swedish police were given orders to deport a man to Iran, but instead sent him to Iraq, where he now risks 15 years in prison for claiming to be a citizen in the country, according to a report in the Expressen daily.

"The police can't deport someone to another land than the one which has been decided," Mikael Ribbenvik at the Migration Board (Migrationsverket) told the newspaper.

The 53-year-old man, who was born in Iraq, was deported by Saddam Hussein in the 1980s. After that he became an Iranian citizen.

He applied for residency in Sweden in 2002, but his application was rejected and in October 2010 the police in Gävle in northern Sweden were instructed to deport him back to Iran.

Why he was sent to the wrong country is unclear, but the error has been reported to the Parliamentary Ombudsman (Justitieombudsmannen - JO).

According to acquaintances of the man's sister the man remains in jail at a police station in Baghdad.

"I travelled to Baghdad and got to visit my brother at the police station. He was in a dark cell without electricity along with several others. I could barely see him behind the bars," the man's sister told the Dagens Nyheter daily.

"I haven't had contact with him in months, but my acquaintances in Baghdad say he's still in jail."

Gävle police have admitted to having made an error and that they now have changed their routines.

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