Amnesty International on June 7 urged European leaders to stop the upcoming deportation of asylum seekers to Iraq because their human rights may be violated in unsafe regions of the country. Authorities in the UK, Belgium, Sweden, Norway, and the Netherlands are taking part in a joint effort to return the refugees to Iraq after the asylum petitions of many of the refugees were denied. Amnesty contends that the planned deportations violate the rules of the UN Refugee Agency (UNHCR), which oppose forced returns to specific areas in Iraq considered too dangerous for civilians. The International Federation of Iraqi Refugees (IFIR) also condemned the return of refugees to high-risk areas in Iraq, alleging that more than 100 Iraqi refugees in the UK will be deported this week.
Last month, an Iraqi refugee won a suit against the UK Home Office in which he claimed that he was threatened illegally with deportation to Iraq after being accused of committing terrorist activities. The UK High Court found that the man’s arrest and detention were illegal. The UK government also announced last month that it will review the country’s Human Rights Act after two Pakistani terror suspects successfully avoided deportation due to concerns for their safety. ERegions in Iraq remain dangerous, with violence often targeted against civilians and minorities.
From Jurist, June 8. Used with permission.