Six European Union member countries argue that forceful deportation of migrants back to Afghanistan, where Taliban insurgents have made significant gains in recent weeks which must continue despite the government in Kabul postponing such “non-voluntary returns” for three months.
Interior ministers from Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Germany, Greece, and the Netherlands requested the EU’s executive branch to “intensify talks” with the Afghan government in early August to assure that refugee deportation would continue.
“We would like to highlight the urgent need to perform returns, both voluntary and non-voluntary, to Afghanistan,” the ministers said in a joint letter to the European Commission.
“Stopping returns sends the wrong signal and is likely to motivate even more Afghan citizens to leave their home for the EU,” it added.
According to a senior EU official, the letter comes after Afghan authorities informed the EU that they intended to postpone forced returns for three months.
The official said that the Afghans claimed too much “strain on the administrative structures to organize these forced return operations properly.”
The EU official furthered that EU countries “will probably not organize and conduct forced returns.”
“Given the context, it is hard to imagine that we would conduct forced return operations for the moment,” he added.
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