Refugee deported hours before court suspends the order
A teenage asylum seeker from Afghanistan was deported from Finland on Tuesday a few hours before the court suspended the deportation order, reported the national broadcaster Yle on Thursday.
The Turku appeal court allowed the 19-year-old asylum seeker Zaki Hussaini to stay in Finland based on his work permit application, but the law enforcers had already made the deportation by that time.
The police took him in custody from his home in Loimaa, a city of south-western Finland, on Sunday and placed him on a flight to Afghanistan early Tuesday morning, as two of his asylum applications had been rejected.
However, the Turku appeal court issued an order after a few hours of the deportation suspending his deportation order as he applied for residence permit on the basis of employment.
Although the Employment Office approved his application in June, the Immigration Service was yet to make decision to provide Hussaini with a work permit, said the Yle report.
When the court ruled that he should be allowed to stay in Finland awaiting a decision, by this time he was already in Kabul.
Now his arrival in Finland to attend the job is unlikely, as he has a two-year ban from the Schengen area.
The police and immigration authorities, however, claimed that they followed the standard procedures.
“The police followed the law,” Marko Heikkilä of south-west Finland police’s immigration monitoring unit told Yle.
The application to stay the deportation order was, however, submitted before the flight left Helsinki.
Liisa Lintuluoto of the Helsinki police told Yle that officers cannot be expected to stay up to speed with legal actions started ‘at the last minute’.
Although she refused to comment on individual cases, Lintuluoto said Hussaini’s case story could play a role in the police decision to deport him.
“If there are cases where there have already been several earlier negative decisions, and deportation enforcement has not been stayed, the police are not going to wait to see what the decision might be this time,” Lintuluoto told Yle.
Although the employment office made positive decision, it does not mean that he has the residence permit, as Immigration Service which makes the final decision in this regard has not yet handled his application.
Marjaana Laine of the Refugee Advice Centre told Yle that it is not unusual for a deportation to be cancelled at the last minute—or even a little too late. “Our experience is that there are more of these cases now than before,” Laine said to Yle.
Laine termed the poor communications among asylum seekers, courts, the police, and lawyers problematic.