It’s been well over a year since tens of thousands of asylum seekers came to Finland from countries like Iraq, Afghanistan, Somalia and others. An important watershed in the history of these asylum seekers took place in May, when an assessment by the Finnish Immigration Service (Migri) saw parts of countries like Iraq are safe to return asylum seekers.
The decision by Migri in May very much defined the government’s asylum policy on what it would do to the majority of refugees that came to Finland. The new policy would tighten immigration policy and pass laws in parliament that would make family reunification near-impossible and undermine asylum seekers’ due process by, for example shortening appeal times.
While the government and Migri are doing everything possible to get rid of as many asylum seekers from Finland, it’s clear that many refugees cannot return back to their home countries because it’s too dangerous.
In many respects, Finland’s immigration and asylum policy today is ineffective because it’s based more on the anti-immigration sentiment of the government than on fact. It is for this very reason why the country’s present immigration policy will continue to be expensive and fail.
In September, the government had budgeted close to a billion euros to handle and take care of the 32,476 asylum seekers that came to Finland the previous year. That is a big sum of money that could have been better spent than by keeping people waiting for months idly in asylum reception centers.
Does the government have a plan on what it plans to do with those asylum seekers still in Finland?
There is no credible plan and this is at the heart of the problem. As long as there is no effective plan Finland will never solve the present situation of asylum seekers in Finland effectively and humanely.