Norwegian minister: Some long-term asylum seekers to receive a residence permit

Monica MælandPhoto: Berit Roald / NTB
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The Norwegian government is introducing a one-off solution that grants residency to some foreigners who had their asylum application rejected and have been in Norway for a long time.

The scheme applies to foreigners who have had their asylum application rejected but who by October 1 will have resided in Norway for more than 16 years after the asylum application was submitted.

They must also have a total age and length of stay of at least 65 years. The scheme does not apply to foreigners who have been convicted.

“I am glad that we now have a solution in place for this group. They are numerically few, but they are in a difficult situation. It is nevertheless important to emphasize that this is a one-off solution, and it will not apply to those with a criminal record,” Minister of Justice and Public Security Monica Mæland (H) said in a press release.

Residence time outside Norway is deducted from the calculation, and the foreigner must have lived in Norway on January 1, 2019.

Temporary access

Those affected must ask to have their case assessed in relation to the one-off solution, which takes effect on June 1. The deadline is December 1.

“There are people who, for various reasons, cannot be returned to their home country, but who have not been granted residence in Norway either, which gives them the opportunity to participate in society.

Getting their lives put on hold for so long is demanding, and these people should get a clarification,” Minister for Children and Families Kjell Ingolf Ropstad (KrF) said.

The solution is temporary, and it will be revoked when the relevant cases have been processed.

Agreed in 2019

The Granavolden platform from 2019 states that the government will “facilitate a one-off solution for older, non-returnable asylum seekers who have lived in Norway for more than 16 years.”

This means that a person who is 47 years old and has been in Norway for 18 years will be able to apply for residence. The same goes for a person who is 35 years old but who has been in the country for 30 years.

Absurd

The Progress Party’s (FRP) immigration policy spokesman Jon Helgheim has reacted strongly to the government’s decision.

“It is so infinitely sad that there are always cheaters and unfounded asylum seekers to be helped. At least now no illegal immigrants will travel voluntarily,” he told NTB.

Helgheim believes the Conservatives have “indulged in total irresponsibility to give the Christian Democrats a symbolic victory in immigration policy.”

“A group has been constructed so that 50 asylum seekers can be rewarded for breaking the law. That is absurd,” he said.

Helgheim believes that the scheme that is being introduced is completely different from the one the Christian Democrats got through when the Progress Party was in government.

“At that time, the scheme would have given less than ten people residence. Now the Conservatives have agreed to a scheme that gives the average asylum seeker permanent residence and all rights in Norway as a reward for having broken the law long enough,” he said.

Source: © NTB Scanpix / #Norway Today / #NorwayTodayNews

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