Afghan hunger strikers denied asylum

Afghan hunger strikers denied asylum
The Swedish Migration Board has decided not to re-open the asylum application cases of eight hunger-striking Afghan men in Boden, north Sweden.

The Afghanis’ spokesman Ahmad Kahlil told local newspaper Norbottenskuriren (NK) that the Migration Board (Migrationsverket) has announced that it will not try the men’s cases again.

The men have been on hunger strike for two weeks in protest against their deportation orders. They maintain that it is not safe for them to return to Afghanistan.

“We understand that people who are waiting for a ruling or who have had their asylum application denied are in a very difficult situation,” said the Migration Board’s director of operations, Mikael Ribbenvik.

“It is important to understand that we have an asylum process in Sweden where the Migration Board’s decision can be appealed in a regular Swedish court,” he added.

The hunger strike outside the Migration Board’s offices in Boden continues despite the negative ruling and the men have already begun the process of appealing the ruling.

The hunger strikers have taped their mouths shut to demonstrate that they are refusing to eat or drink.

Twelve days into the protest, three of the men had been admitted to hospital, with Red Cross representatives saying they were in a critical condition.

Around 15 Afghan men are on hungerstrike in Boden and at an asylum seekers’ residence near Umeå, reported Sveriges Radio (SR) on Tuesday. Some have already had their asylum applications denied, while others are still waiting for a ruling.

TT/The Local/nr

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