Nine Norwegian and nine Swedish students on exchange in St. Petersburg must leave Russia within three days, or they will be deported.
On Friday, Russian immigration police arrived at the Norwegian University Center in the city. The nine Norwegian and nine Swedish students at the center were told that they were in the country on the wrong visa.
“It was very dramatic. We all are upset and shocked,” says Yngvild Vollen Steiro, one of the students at the Center, to Universitas.
The university center is a collaborative project between the universities of Oslo, Tromsø, Bergen and Trondheim. It is UiO who takes care of its daily operations.
The students at the center should, according to the schedule, have an exam next week and then travel home the following Friday. Now they have to leave the country by Monday.
Steiro says that the students were asked to state that they would study at the Baltic State Technical University “Voenmekh” before starting their studies this autumn.
“We’ve never been there,” she said.
UiO is in contact with the Ministry of Foreign Affairs for an overview of the situation.
– “The UD does not know the background for the Russian government’s action or purpose. We are in dialogue with the university center to clarify what the Russian control means for the operation of the center, as well as for Norwegian students and staff,” says UD’s communications manager Frode Overland Andersen to Aftenposten.
NTB Scanpix / Norway Today