Denmark approved a law allowing it to relocate refugees while their cases are being processed.
The European country approved the Danish Aliens Act on June 3rd with 70 in favour and 20 against. The law allows Denmark to relocate asylum seekers outside of the European Union as their cases are being processed.
Denmark would basically outsource a part of its immigration process while avoiding immigrants to stay in the country in the meantime. The European Union member will relocate asylum seekers who arrive in the country to an offshore partner outside of the E.U.
With this law, the social-democrat government considers refugees would stop coming to Denmark once they realize they won’t be living in the E.U.
International community concerned by new move of Denmark on immigration
Denmark has been tightening its immigration policy in the recent years. The goal for the Prime Minister Mette Frederiksen is to reach zero asylum seekers for Denmark. According to Reuters, refugees who sought asylum in Denmark steadily dropped to 1,500 applicants in 2020 compared to 21,000 in 2015. In April 2021, Denmark sent back Syrian refugees considering the country was now safe.
No agreement with a third country has been found yet but discussions are allegedly happening with African countries.
The European Commission, the United Nations and human rights activists expressed their concerns about the new legislation. Adalbert Jahnz, a Commission spokeman, considered that “external processing of asylum claims raises fundamental questions about both the access to asylum procedures and effective access to protection“.
Media sources and useful links:
- Denmark passes law to process asylum seekers outside Europe, Reuters, June 2021, Free access