-The number of asylum seekers who have given up on Norway and would rather go home, have increased since last fall. Many people choose to leave even before they have received an application for asylum, the Directorate of Immigration (UDI) and the International Organization for Migration (IOM) informs the radio channel P4.
– In the first two months of this year, we had 620 applications for voluntary return, which is an increase of 90 percent compared to the same period last year, says communications director Sigurd Tvete in IOM Norway.
Most of them are from Iraq. About 250 Iraqis left Norway through IOM’s return program from October 2015 until January this year. Tvete says that there also are quite a few Syrians who want to return to Turkey, Lebanon and Jordan.
Many of them applied early in the asylum process, and according to the UDI 60 percent of those who have applied for assisted return, have not yet received a response to their asylum applications.
– Many say it’s because of family reasons, like a family member who is ill, or just that they miss their family. Many also mention that they do not think they will be granted asylum and that they therefore do not see any reason to remain in Norway, Tvete says.
Source: NTB scanpix / Norway Today