A week in an asylum seeker’s life in Finland: legal limbo and deportation

by , under Enrique Tessieri

From good news like with the release of Hayder Al-Hatemi on February 1 this week is characterized by extending the detention of an asylum seeker and two deportations.

Let’s start off with DH, who was detained in Pori on January 22. His fiancée wrote a letter asking without any luck Prime Minister Juha Sipilä to free her fiancé from detention. She wrote:

My fiancé was torn from life without any warning when he was detained. The door shut coldly in front of me and there were no chances even to say goodbye at the first place he was detained.

DH was transferred on January 26 from Helsinki’s Metsälä immigration removal center to Lappeenranta. Over the weekend, DH and her parents made a long six-hour trip from Pori to Lappeenranta by car to visit her fiancé on Sunday between 9am and noon.

DH and her fiancée posing for a selfie from detention center in Lappeenranta on Sunday.

DH’s fiancée was hopeful that he’d be released after a judge heard her on Tuesday.

“They are not going to release him because the police fear he’ll go into hiding,” she said by phone, who didn’t know what was the next legal challenge her fiancé faces.

Deportation #1

Kerstin Ögård, who wrote an inspiring post on Migrant Tales last week, took the case of twenty-year-old Aziz Khalaf, who was deported Tuesday noon to Iraq.

The young Iraqi asylum seeker writes:

“I came to Finland because I had read that it is a country that has freedom and humanity…Just please focus on this word ‘humanity,’ what does this word mean to you? Please let me stay here for the sake of humanity if nothing else.”

The young twenty-year-old Iraqi asylum seeker from Basra posing in Helsinki during summer.

That “humanity” you speak of Aziz Khalaf is in rationed supply in some places like the Finnish Immigration Service, the police service and the government.

“Number 23”

The last person who is detained and will be deported is Nasir who was nicknamed “number 23” because that the number on the wall of his cell.

There’s not much more we can say about this detained Iraqi asylum seeker except for a video he recorded and posted on Facebook.

His cell has the number 23 on the wall. You can watch the full video here.