Somalia’s semi-autonomous region of Puntland has refused to receive Somali nationals from the Norwegian government, who have been denied permission to remain in Norway.
According to reliable sources, the Norwegian government requested Puntland to receive a number of failed asylum seekers it planned to repatriate to the stable region.
However, Puntland Council of ministers on Thursday debated on the request from the Norwegian government during their weekly meeting in the Presidential Palace and agreed not to facilitate the return of the Somali nationals, who went to seek for asylum in the Scandinavian nation.
‘’ Puntland Council of Ministers have strongly agreed to refuse Somali nationals deported from Norway to be brought back to Puntland,’’ read a statement from the Puntland Presidential Office.
Human rights and advocacy groups have voiced their concerns on deportation of Somalis seeking for asylum, saying that it represents a clear violation of international refugee conventions.
The United Nations high commissioner for refugees has continuously said that many parts of the war-ravaged country remains unsafe due to threats from the militant group and human rights violation such as rape.
Tens of thousands of Somalis fled the country after the Central Government was overthrown in 1991 and civil war emerged. Most went to neighbouring countries but large numbers sought sanctuary in Europe and North America.