Dutch are sending Yezidi refugees back to camps in Iraq

April, 2019

The Dutch immigration service IND is sending Yezidi asylum seekers back to refugee camps in northern Iraq, arguing that they have sufficient access to food and other facilities, Trouw reported at the weekend.

Lawyers specializing in asylum law told the paper that they fear the decision to send Yezidis back to the camps is new policy, a view which is also held by refugee organisation Vluchtelingenwerk.

The IND, they say, is getting round the rules on deporting vulnerable groups by assuming that Yezidis who have spent a couple of years living in refugee camps in northern Iraq now live there.

In addition, the UN high commissioner for refugees has also expressed its ‘serious concerns’ about the capacity of the Kurdish authorities to deal with almost one million refugees from Syria and Iraq, Trouw said.

MPs from ChristenUnie, the PvdA and GroenLinks have asked junior justice minister Mark Harbers to explain the policy of the Netherlands towards the Yezidis, warning that their safety is at risk if they are sent back.

There are also concerns with the Dutch Yezidi community, which estimates between 100 and 200 newcomers are hoping to win residency rights.

Source: Dutch News