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News > World

Austria To Propose Deportation of Afghans to Central Asia

  • Afghans try to leave their country, Aug. 16, 2021.

    Afghans try to leave their country, Aug. 16, 2021. | Photo: Twitter/ @UN_SPExperts

Published 16 August 2021
Opinion

"Alternatives must be sought if deportations cannot be carried out because of the limits imposed by the European Convention on Human Rights," said the Austrian Interior Minister.

On Monday, Austria's Interior Minister Karl Nehammer said he will propose to the European Union (EU) that Afghan deportation policies be maintained.

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"Deportation centers in the region around Afghanistan would be a possibility. It needs the strength and backing of the European Commission (EC). I will propose it in the Council of Interior Ministers and discuss it with the Commission and my counterparts," said Nehammer.

"Alternatives must be sought if deportations cannot be carried out because of the limits imposed by the European Convention on Human Rights," added the member of the conservative People's Party.

Two weeks ago, Austria was one of six European countries to raise with the EC the need to maintain deportations of rejected asylum seekers to Afghanistan. Since then, however, Denmark, Germany and the Netherlands have changed their minds on that proposal because of the unstoppable advance of the Taliban.

On Monday, Belgium also announced that it will send three military transport planes to evacuate its citizens and some Afghans who have collaborated with its embassy in recent years.

"The situation in Afghanistan is evolving rapidly. The priority is the safety of Belgians on the ground", tweeted Prime Minister Alexander De Croo, who confirmed that his administration approved an "evacuation operation."

This announcement comes when commercial flights have been suspended to or from Kabul International Airport, where thousands of Afghans have gathered to try to leave the country.

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