Returning The Unaccompanied Asylum Seeking Minors: Policy and Strategies Put in Place in the Best Interest of the Child
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The study has been conducted with the objective of examining Norway’s policy on the returning (deportation) of unaccompanied asylum seeking minors as well as the strategies put in place in the best interest of the child. Specifically, it sought to find out among other things the reason unaccompanied minors choose Norway as their destination country; existing policy regarding the return or deportation of same. In terms of its design and analysis, the study employs the qualitative approach. It basically took the form of desk research analyzing texts from books, policy documents, human rights rapporteurs, individual research papers (both qualitative and quantitative studies) and other relevant organisations like Non-Governmental Organisations. The study found that the factors that pull UAMs to Norway UAMs Norway’s reputation as a good country, its strong asylum policy especially unaccompanied minors, social connections, opportunities for a better future and also their respect for human dignity On Norway’s existing policy direction regarding the return of unaccompanied children between 16 and 18 years, the study found that Norway applies the European Return Directive. The Dublin II Regulations also guide the country and also the EU Action Plan (2010 – 2014). In view of this, Norway has done quite well in terms of the reintegration package put in place for both forced and voluntary returnees. On the issue of how Norway’s policy concerning the return of unaccompanied children between 16 and 18 years differ from the United Nations Guidelines and the European Directives, it was found that Norway’s return policy in principle does not differ from those of the United Nations and the European Directives. However how it carries out its forced returns or deportations is what seems to have some inadequacies. When it comes to whether Norway’s existing policy regarding the return of unaccompanied children between 16 and 18 years adhere to the best interest of the child as advocated by various international conventions, it was found again that there are issues with concerning its forced deportation. Therefore the conclusion drawn is that whereas voluntary return policy in Norway is consistent with the best interest of the child principle as advocated by various international conventions, its forced return does not. On the basis of the above, overall it can be concluded that Norway has a policy on the return or deportation of unaccompanied asylum seeking minors between the ages of 16 and 18 years and that generally the strategies put in place are in the best interest of the child but there is also the need for improvements in some aspects especially in connection with forced returns.
Master i International Social Welfare and Health Policy